When the drugs don’t work: how we can turn the tide of antimicrobial resistanceNo single action in any single group is sufficient
A new report by the Australian Academy of Science has called for the Australian government to take immediate action to counter the growing resistance of bacteria to antibiotics, a problem known as antimicrobial resistance. The paper particularly highlights addressing shortfalls in research funding, food labelling and collaborations between sectors.
Antimicrobial resistance is accelerated when antimicrobials are used unnecessarily, (such as when antibiotics are prescribed for a viral infection, or used as growth promoters in farming practices, and when their use is poorly managed.
Antimicrobial resistance is a complex problem involving different sectors. It is driven by, and affects, the human, animal and environmental health sectors.
Within human, animal and environmental health, groups of prescribers, users and regulators have influence over antimicrobial use and resistance. We often think of prescribers as GPs, but within this group are all doctors, dentists, pharmacists, vets and nurse practitioners working in the community, in hospitals and in residential aged care facilities.
Similarly, patients are not the only users of antimicrobials. Farmers and pet owners also fall into this category. Local and national governments typically play the role of regulating antimicrobials, but as antimicrobial resistance is a global problem, the actions of international governments and agencies are also significant.
Action to combat antimicrobial resistance requires prescribers, users and regulators of antimicrobials in human, animal and environmental health work together.
The full article can be read here on TheConversation.com.