Assurance and intervention is needed around antimicrobial prescribing in secondary care outpatient settings, which has increased by 21% in 5-years. Use of NHS FP10 prescriptions impedes timely monitoring of prescribing. This project aimed to develop an efficient method for monitoring and reporting outpatient prescribing on FP10 forms.


A Microsoft Excel spreadsheet was developed to allow direct importing of antimicrobial prescribing data from ePACT2, which then automatically updates charts of prescribing activity using VLookup formulae and pivot charts. Reports were developed in Microsoft Word that directly pull updated charts from the spreadsheet described.


The method allows rapid calculation and collation of DDDs and creates charts for assessing monthly antimicrobial prescribing trends. The reports highlight areas for review and action, which have driven engagement in antimicrobial stewardship across the organisation. Unexpectedly, these reports heightened nurses’ awareness of antimicrobial stewardship (AMS), who now seek reassurance on, and challenge, antimicrobial prescribing at the time of prescribing. The process takes less than 20-minutes on average (versus 3-hours previously), freeing up antimicrobial pharmacists’ time to interrogate prescribing trends and undertake clinical duties. This method also allows potentially inappropriate prescriptions to be identified and pulled from NHS BSA sooner, so that individual prescribers and teams can be targeted for intervention and reflection.


This method allows efficient reporting of antimicrobial prescribing, enables stewardship teams to focus interventions on prescribers and teams, and drives engagement in antimicrobial stewardship. This method could be adapted by other organisations to monitor and interrogate antimicrobial prescribing.

  • This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.

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