The Department of Microbiology at the Central Hospital of Esbjerg, established in 1987, serves the five hospitals in Ribe county, Denmark. From early on, the department has endeavoured to guide the hospital's antimicrobial policy. In order to investigate whether this involvement had any measurable impact on the antimicrobial resistance pattern in our region, we compared the resistance patterns of 212 strains isolated from the blood of bacteraemic patients in 1988 to those of 317 strains isolated in 1992. No increase in antibiotic resistance was revealed. This is noteworthy since new specialties have been established at the Central Hospital during this period, with an increased number of patients requiring antimicrobial therapy. It is important to survey the antibiotic resistance pattern closely, and that this is done locally.