International guidelines for infectious diseases: a practical guide
A growing number of organisations have become involved in the development of guidelines for infectious diseases (ID). The degree of acceptation of guidelines varies from one country to another. Some of these national differences are determining the practices of prescribing antibiotics, and infection control both in hospitals and in the community. This review provides updated information on ID guideline programmes, in particular on the topic of antimicrobial therapy. It is aimed at clinicians, both in their role as care providers and as designers of local antibiotic guidelines (antibiotic booklets). Definitions are given and the process of development is discussed. International and national ID guideline programmes in the English language are presented. Many URLs provide access to the different websites where most guidelines can be downloaded free of charge.