Safety and Quality > National Priorities > Antimicrobial Use and Resistance in Australia Project > National Antimicrobial Utilisation Surveillance Program

The Commission supports SA Health to collect , analyse and report on data on antimicrobial utilisation in hospitals through its National Antimicrobial Utilisation Surveillance Program (NAUSP).

NAUSP collects data from over 70 major Australian hospitals and provides them with reports of key antibiotics utilisation every two months. The NAUSP commenced in July 2004 with all states and territories represented in the program since 2008. Hospitals contribute data on a voluntary basis and the number of participating hospitals has further increased with the introduction of the National Safety and Quality Health Services (NSQHS) Standards in 2013.

For more information on the NAUSP, or to download the National Antimicrobial Utilisation Surveillance Program: Annual report 2013/14, please visit the SA Health website.

2014 National Antimicrobial Utilisation Surveillance Program Report

The 2014 NAUSP Report, Antimicrobial use in Australian hospitals: 2014 report of the National Antimicrobial Utilisation Surveillance Program, was released on 4 September 2015.

Antimicrobial use in Australian hospitals: 2014 report of the National Antimicrobial Utilisation Surveillance Program

The key findings include the following:

  • NAUSP is a passive surveillance system measuring rates of AU in hospital settings. The Program commenced in July 2004 and is operated by SA Health.
  • In 2014, a total of 129 adult acute hospitals contributed more than six months of data to NAUSP. This represents more than 90 percent of principal referral hospital beds and 82 percent of total hospital beds in hospitals with more than 50 beds nationally.
  • The 2014 NAUSP Report includes historical comparisons over five and ten-year periods for selected antimicrobials, which provide valuable information about trends and patterns of use.
  • There is a wide variance in average antimicrobial usage rates between hospitals. However, overall there has been a slight decline generally in usage rates since rates peaked in 2010.
  • The average aggregate annual rate for total-hospital antibacterial use decreased by 2.2 per cent from the 2013 rate; a decrease of 6.2 per cent from Australia’s peak usage in 2010.
  • Twenty antimicrobial agents accounted for 92 percent of all antibacterials used in Australian hospitals, with six antibacterials representing more than 50 percent. These antibacterials include:

– Amoxicillin with clavulanic acid

– Flucloxacillin

– Cephazolin

– Amoxicillin

– Doxycycline

– Cephalexin

  • The most commonly prescribed antibiotics identified through NAUSP were consistent with those identified in the National Antimicrobial Prescribing Survey, with some minor variation likely due to differences in timing of data collection.
  • Australian usage rates continue to be greater than in the Netherlands and Sweden, and on par with Denmark.