Antimicrobial use in Australian hospitals

The National Antimicrobial Utilisation Surveillance Program (NAUSP) collects data on the volume of antimicrobial usage in Australian hospitals.

NAUSP, is administered by SA Health. NAUSP is a voluntary program that focuses on standardised measurement of antimicrobial use in Australian adult public and private hospitals. Antimicrobial usage for adult hospitals is measured in defined daily doses per 1,000 occupied bed days. In excess of 200 hospitals from all states and territories currently contribute to NAUSP; including all Principal Referral Hospitals.

NAUSP provides an important tool for hospitals to support their local antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) programs. Participation in NAUSP can also assist hospitals to meeting the AMS requirements of the National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standard Preventing and Controlling Healthcare-Associated Infection .

The Commission has published a series of annual reports on analyses of NAUSP data, the most recent of which relates to 2016. NAUSP routinely publishes six monthly benchmarking reports for hospital peer groups, speciality units, states and territories.

The 2016 NAUSP annual report included analyses of data contributed by 169 hospitals (143 public and 26 private) in 2016. All Principal Referral Hospitals and 88% (93/106) of Public Acute Group A and B hospitals participated in the program in 2016. Data on antifungal usage in Australian hospitals were included in the report for the first time in 2016.

Previously published national total-hospital antibiotic usage trend data may not be accurate because of inconsistent application of surveillance definitions for 29 Queensland public hospitals between 2013 and 2017. A process is underway to obtain and reanalyse Queensland antibiotic usage data, and to publish updated Queensland and national antibiotic usage trend data following the revised analyses.

For more information about NAUSP, including becoming a contributor, visit the NAUSP website.

NAUSP Publications