Antimicrobial Resistance

World Antimicrobial Awareness Week | 18-24 November 2022 

The theme of WAAW 2022 is "Preventing Antimicrobial Resistance together".
AMR is a threat to humans, animals, plants and the environment. It affects us all. That is why this year's theme calls for cross-sectoral collaboration to preserve the effectiveness of these important medicines.

GET INVOLVED IN WAAW this year! 

By working together to tackle AMR, we will help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, save millions of lives, preserve antimicrobials for generations and protect the future from drug-resistant diseases. Drug-resistant microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites can spread between and within animal, human, plant populations, and migrate through the environment. Therefore, addressing antimicrobial resistance (AMR) requires multi-sectoral interventions known as the One Health approach. This holistic approach recognizes that animal, human, plant and environmental health are inextricably intertwined and interdependent.

How to participate

Get involved in one or more of the following ways and encourage your network to do so! If you organize an activity, virtually or in person, let us know!

  • Go Blue for AMR awareness: To increase the global visibility of AMR, the Quadripartite launched the `Go blue for AMR’ campaign during WAAW 2021.  Join the colour campaign by wearing blue during WAAW events
  • Share your AMR stories: Organize a lunch or after-work meeting where colleagues can share their first or most recent experiences with AMR and how it could have been prevented. 
  • Target the top: Write to your elected representatives and let them know your concerns about the threat of AMR.
  • Reach out to the media: Spread the key messages through your participation in talk shows, discussion panels and media briefings, and invite journalists to cover your events and activities to get more people to participate.
  • Encourage young AMR Stewardship Champions: Work with your local school administration to hold a special school assembly on AMR.
  • Use the WAAW visuals: Visual reminders to handle antimicrobials with care are a great way to start conversations and raise awareness of current AMR challenges – check out this Trello board for ideas.

Did you know?

  • In 2019, nearly 5 million human deaths worldwide were associated with bacterial AMR, of which 1.3 million human deaths were directly attributable to bacterial AMR.

  • Keeping animals healthy is an important measure to reduce the need for antimicrobial treatment in the first place.

  • When preparing food, washing hands before cooking and keeping food preparation areas clean can help prevent the spread of drug-resistant microbes.

  • Left unchecked, in the next decade, AMR could result in a GDP shortfall of US$ 3.4 trillion annually and push 24 million more people into extreme poverty.

Key messages

Scientific knowledge and science-based evidence are needed to identify, manage and mitigate AMR risks before they become large-scale emergencies.

Good husbandry practices, biosecurity, sanitation, hygiene, vaccination and other infection prevention measures are essential to reduce the need for antimicrobials in animals and antimicrobial pesticides in plants.

Laboratory diagnostic and sensitivity tests are essential for the detection of AMR. They guide therapeutic treatments to save human and animal lives. They also play a key role in surveillance efforts to design successful interventions to reduce AMR in humans, animals, plants and the environment.

Improving access to expert advice, prescriptions, appropriate antimicrobials will limit the development of AMR, reduce production and productivity losses and build more sustainable and resilient agrifood systems.

The use of Integrated Pest Management and good agricultural practices provides a system-wide approach to keeping crops healthy, resorting to chemical pesticides, including antimicrobials, only as a last option.

Good governance of AMR requires regulation of substandard and counterfeit antimicrobials and investment in reducing AMR at national level in line with the commitments of the Global Action Plan.

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