Antimicrobial Resistance and Infectious Diseases
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is the ability of a microorganism (bacteria, viruses and parasites) to stop an antimicrobial (antibiotic, antiviral and antimalarial) from working against it. As a result, standard medical treatments become ineffective and infections, including HIV and malaria, persist and even spread. AMR threatens the effective prevention and treatment of an ever-increasing range of infections caused by microorganisms and also compromises the success of surgery and cancer chemotherapy. Additionally the cost of health care for patients with resistant infections is higher than care for patients with non-resistant infections due to longer duration of illness, additional tests and use of more expensive drugs.
EPN’s strategy on AMR is inspired by the global action plan to tackle antimicrobial resistance which was endorsed in May 2015 at the World Health Assembly. The plan is guided by the advice of countries and key stakeholders, based on several multi-stakeholder consultations at different global and regional forums. EPN is working to increase awareness of antimicrobial resistance; Increase awareness among faith-based health providers and the public of the threat posed by AMR; Develop and disseminate treatment guidelines for common infections; Conduct prescription audits and other surveillance on antimicrobial use in faith-based health facilities; Develop training courses on the rational use of antibiotics and other antimicrobials and establish quality assurance systems to monitor the quality of antimicrobials. Ultimately EPN looks forward to a network that supports continuity of successful treatment and prevention of infectious diseases with medicines that are effective, safe, quality-assured, rationally used, and accessible to all who need them. In this EPN is closely working together with the ReAct group.