Creating awareness around antimicrobial resistance
Published on 2020-11-18 14:35:57

Creating awareness around antimicrobial resistance


Today marks the beginning of World Antimicrobial Awareness Week. This week aims to create awareness around the accelerated threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR). AMR occurs when bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites change over time and stop responding to medicines, increasing the risk of diseases and severe illnesses.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a growing problem, which eventually will pose a global threat and impact all our lives. Many factors have accelerated the threat of AMR worldwide, such as overuse and improper use of medicines in humans and livestock, as well as poor access to clean water and sanitation, which causes infections to spread and evolve easily.

The COVID-19 pandemic has also been marked as a possible cause to AMR. The misuse of antibiotics to fight COVID-19 infection could lead to accelerated emergence and the spread of antimicrobial resistance. During the World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (previously World Antibiotics Awareness Week) we create awareness around AMR, and hope to change the tide.

The World Health Organization is calling for a global response against resistance and mandated this week as World Antimicrobial Awareness Week. By encouraging health care providers and the general public to safely use medication, WHO aims to stop the spread of drug-resistant infections. Another part of the campaign is addressing world leaders to introduce policies that for example control the use of antibiotics in livestock. In 2015, the World Health Assembly endorsed a global action plan to stop antimicrobial resistance. A new One Health Global Leaders Group is about to be launched, that will advance the AMR global action plan to ensure that we can continue to prevent and treat infections with effective medication in the future.

For more information, see:

WHO World Antimicrobial Awareness Week

Global Antibiotic Research & Development Partnership – why we need a new access model for antibiotics