Faculty Member Published in The Journal of the American Medical Association

Published on 11 November 2014

In what may be a first in the 150-year history of St. Louis College of Pharmacy, a faculty member is published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). The Journal is among the most prestigious and respected periodicals in the medical community.

Scott Micek, Pharm.D., associate professor of pharmacy practice, co-authored the editorial Rational Use of Antibiotics in the ICU with Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis physician Marin Kollef. The editorial first appeared online Oct. 1. It accompanies astudy focused on the use of antibiotics in a hospital intensive care unit (ICU).

“The editors of JAMA recognized the previous work in the area of antibiotic resistance that our research group has performed,” Micek says. “And when Dr. Kollef asked me to co-author an editorial in a highly regarded journal, you don’t say no.  It’s an honor.”

The issue of antibiotic resistance, and the pharmacists’ role in ensuring the correct usage of antibiotics, is a hot topic of discussion. As the medication experts on the health care team, pharmacists are best qualified to make sure antibiotics are used properly.  Within the past year, both the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control have published warnings about the increase of antibiotic resistant bacteria.

Micek and Kollef’s commentary focuses on the challenges of balancing the needs of the patient against the potential emergence and spread of antibiotic resistant bacteria.

“Pharmacists, physicians, and all health care professionals must work together to promote antimicrobial stewardship,” Micek says. “There are several new antibiotics on the horizon that will help treat antibiotic-resistant infections.  However, even when they do become available, they will need to be used in the appropriate situation.”

Micek is one of several faculty members at the College who has worked and published in this specialized area of health care. 

“Antibiotics are a necessary and very useful medication for many patients,” Micek says. “Pharmacists play an important role in the appropriate selection, dosing, and duration of antibiotics to optimize efficacy, minimize toxicity, and prevent the emergence of resistance.”

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