Using computers to improve prescription practices


We are integrating a tool directly into the electronic health recrod to give hospital doctors feedback on the way they prescribe antibiotics. This system is being trialled in various hospitals.

Portrait / project description (ongoin research project)

Prescribing antibiotics frequently poses problems in practice, since patients don’t always receive the right dosage of the right antibiotic for the right period of time. This promotes the emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance. We are developing a system designed to help doctors to use antibiotics more appropriately. Under COMPASS (COMPuterized Antibiotic Stewardship Study), doctors in three Swiss hospitals will receive tips on the use of antibiotics that are integrated directly into electronic health record. They will also be given regular feedback on their use of antibiotics. Parallel to this, we will collect data on the antimicrobial prescription practices of a control group which is not using the system so that we can monitor the latter’s effectiveness.


The judicious use of antibiotics is one of the key ways to prevent and keep in check the emergence and spread of resistant germs. There is an urgent need for effective, cost-efficient and sustainable methods to improve the way doctors use antibiotics.


We aim to find out whether decision-aid modules integrated into electronic patient files can help in encouraging hospital doctors to improve the way they prescribe antibiotics. .


Should our system prove a success, it could be a tool to use antibiotics more appropriately in hospitals in order to keep antibiotic resistance in check.

Original title

COMPASS study (COMPuterized Antibiotic Stewardship Study)

Project leaders

  • Dr Benedikt Huttner, Département de Médecine Interne, Hôpital Cantonal – HUG, Genève
  • Professeur Laurent Kaiser, Service des Maladies Infectieuses, Hôpitaux Universitaires de Genève, Genève
  • Dr Vladimir Lazarevic, Service des Maladies Infectieuses, Hôpital Cantonal – HUG, Genève
  • Professeur Stephan Jürgen Harbarth, Hôpitaux Universitaires de Genève, Faculté de Médecine, Université de Genève, Genève
  • Professeur Enos Bernasconi, Ospedale Regionale di Lugano, Ente Ospedaliero Cantonale, Lugano
  • Dr Rodolphe Meyer, Hôpitaux Universitaires de Genève, Département des spécilaités de médecine, Genève



Further information on this content



Dr Benedikt Huttner Chef de clinique avec FMH Service des Maladies Infectieuses Département de Médecine Interne Hôpital Cantonal - HUG Rue Gabrielle-Perret-Gentil 4 1211 Genève 14 +41 79 553 33 99