FAO in Cambodia

World Antimicrobial Awareness Week: FAO, CAMBOHUN and RUA encourage public to know and do more about antimicrobial resistance


Phnom Penh, 1 December 2021- Despite several awareness campaigns on antimicrobial awareness and its risks in Cambodia, there is still low awareness among farmers, animal health specialists and the general public. The problem of AMR is being noticed again with the increasing use of antibiotics, especially in the treatment of COVID-19.

FAO in Cambodia collaborated with the Cambodia One Health University Network (CAMBOHUN) and the Royal University of Agriculture (RUA) to reach young people, particularly animal health, agriculture and environmental students including researchers and young professionals.

“We strongly believe that the earlier our young generation is well aware of the antimicrobial resistance (AMR) situation, the greater the impact they will make on addressing AMR as our future practitioners,” Dr Hak Makara, FAO Senior National Technical Advisor on Animal Health said.

Antimicrobial resistance

Antibiotic resistance happens naturally in bacteria when they become resistant to medicines designed to kill them. AMR spread is exacerbated by improper and over use of antimicrobials like antibiotics. AMR is a global concern and its spread needs to be addressed now.


Mr. Pheng Vutha, CAMBOHUN Coordinator, stressed “AMR is currently a global and invisible thread across the sectors. Fighting and controlling this issue requires a collaborative multi-sectorial approach. This is in line with CAMBOHUN as well as other mission of One Health University Networks to sustain the One Health professionals with cross-sectoral expertise in solving the emerging public health threats including AMR.”

In celebrating the World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (WAAW), FAO, CAMBODHUN and RUA organized a webinar focusing on the WAAW global theme, “Spread Awareness, Stop Resistance” last 23 November. WAAW is an annual event held every 18 to 24 November, which is led globally by FAO, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and the World Health Organization (WHO). It is one of the most important events of the United Nations after AMR was declared a global health emergency in 2015. AMR is a growing threat not only to human health but also animal health, food safety, agriculture and the environment.

The WAAW event was held as a hybrid event with online and in-person participants. Under strict COVID-19 restrictions, about 33 participants attended the event at RUA to celebrate WAAW with several distinguished guests. More than 190 participants attended the online event.

Participating students of the video production contest on AMR and avian influenza also highlighted their winning entries during the event. A lively discussion on AMR followed the presentations on government initiatives to address AMR; and, how FAO and other partners are collaborating to help Cambodia.