Dason Staff

Through expert consultation and cutting-edge data feedback and analysis, we help you take your antimicrobial stewardship work to the next level.

The Duke Antimicrobial Stewardship Outreach Network (DASON) was formed in 2013. A 3-year grant from The Duke Endowment was critically important in the formation of DASON. This grant provided financial support and assistance for 10 community hospitals in North and South Carolina to join DASON as charter members.

Since then, DASON has grown to include nearly 30 hospitals. In 2016, DASON was proud to become a founding partner of the newly created Duke Center for Antimicrobial Stewardship and Infection Prevention.

DASON’s primary goals are threefold: 1) to improve quality of patient care, 2) to enhance patient safety, and 3) to promote judicious antimicrobial use for patients treated in community hospitals. Many, if not most, community hospitals in the United States lack sufficient resources and trained personnel who can devote the time and effort necessary to reduce ineffective, suboptimal, or unnecessary antimicrobial use in hospitalized patients. Such antimicrobial use is expensive and has the potential to cause patient harm directly (via adverse effects and healthcare-associated infections such as C difficile infection) and indirectly (via the promotion of widespread antimicrobial resistance).

DASON exists in order to help community hospitals address the problems discussed above by developing an evidence-based, state-of-the art antimicrobial stewardship network. DASON uses an administrative model similar to that of an ongoing and highly successful infection control and prevention program, the Duke Infection Control Outreach Network (DICON). DICON provides assistance in reducing the risk of healthcare associated infections for 43 member hospitals in 6 southeastern states.

In order to achieve its aims, DASON focuses on three primary areas of service: 1) data collection, analysis, feedback and integration, 2) educational initiatives, and 3) expert consultation. A liaison clinical pharmacist with special training in infectious diseases and prior experience in antimicrobial stewardship assists local pharmacy and clinical personnel in developing local stewardship activities. DASON staff members provide member hospitals with assistance in collecting meaningful standardized data on local antimicrobial use and microbial resistance. DASON physicians and pharmacists perform robust data analyses and create network-wide benchmarks allowing for comparison among community hospitals affiliated with DASON. By doing so, each member hospital can identify targets for improvement in stewardship.

DASON staff, including the liaison clinical pharmacist and infectious diseases physician-epidemiologists, provide member community hospitals with frequent on-site visits, monthly newsletters, position statements, and answers to frequently asked questions, with the goal of providing local medical and pharmacy staff with up-to-date, scientifically valid and relevant information to use for promotion of stewardship at the local level. Practical strategies and customizable protocols designed by DASON are provided to staff in member hospitals to be tailored for local needs.

Whatever the stage of development of local stewardship activities, member hospitals of DASON benefit from shared data, experiences, and expertise.