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Dr. Jessica Markham Receives Funding to Study Sources of Antibiotic Prescribing Variability Among Front-Line Providers


Dr. Jessica Markham Receives Funding to Study Sources of Antibiotic Prescribing Variability Among Front-Line Providers

Headshot of Jessica L. Markham, MD, MSc, FAAP
Jessica L. Markham, MD, MSc, FAAP
Associate Professor of Pediatrics, University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine; Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, University of Kansas School of Medicine
Full Biography

Jessica Markham, MD, Pediatric Hospital Medicine, recently received a 5-year $742,097 K08 award from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (1K08HS028845).

Dr. Markham’s study “Standardizing Antibiotic Prescribing for Children Hospitalized with Infections using Novel Metrics and Electronic Clinical Decision Support Tools” will address inappropriate antibiotic use in children.

According to Dr. Markham, antibiotics are one of the most prescribed classes of medications for children, yet 30-50% of all antibiotics are inappropriately prescribed or completely unnecessary, which can contribute to the development of antimicrobial resistance as well as individual adverse events and unintended consequences.

Variability in prescribing can be caused by several factors, including a provider’s lack of knowledge, usability of available prescribing resources, local culture, social pressures, and the work environment. Dr. Markham’s goal is to measure and understand inter- and intra-hospital antibiotic prescribing variability for children hospitalized with common infections.

“Developing a rich understanding of sources of antibiotic prescribing variability among front-line providers can inform usability and workflow integration to maximize uptake of prescribing interventions,” said Dr. Markham.

Dr. Markham’s research will also study the impact of a usability informed mobile electronic clinical decision support (eCDS) tool within PedsGuide to address antibiotic prescribing variability as these tools have the potential to reach broad audiences and to integrate the end-users (i.e., front-line prescribers) and user environment (i.e., busy inpatient ward).

“Findings from this study will be used to prioritize infections in need of standardization of treatment, to track antibiotic standardization improvement over time, and to inform future implementation studies examining the impact of eCDS tools on standardization of antibiotic use and patient outcomes,” said Dr. Markham, “The ultimate goal is to provide me with the skills to effectively enhance healthcare systems by improving the accuracy and efficiency with which healthcare professionals can provide high-quality, evidence-based care to children.”

Dr. Markham’s primary mentor is Dr. Jennifer Goldman (Infectious Diseases). Other local mentors and advisory committee members include Dr. Sarah Fouquet, Dr. Matthew Hall, Dr. Kathy Goggin, Dr. Brandan Kennedy, and Dr. Mark Hoffman.

Dr. Markham’s external mentors include Dr. Samir Shah (Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and Medical Center) and Dr. Kenneth Catchpole (Medical University of South Carolina).

The contents are those of the investigator and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by NIH, or the U.S. Government.