24th January 2019

The British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (BSAC) welcomes the UK’s five-year action plan, and 20-year vision, to tackle antimicrobial resistance.

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The Society feels the Government’s long-term ambition – to “contain and control” antimicrobial resistance – is necessarily ambitious. As such, we think it would be helped significantly by commitments to undertake a number of practical and highly targeted actions that are linked to the National Action Plan’s main aims and objectives. These include:

Appointing a ‘Minister of Antimicrobial Resistance, Pandemic Preparedness and Sepsis’ to provide leadership, visibility, and accountability on this critically important, but complex, subject

Ensuring all interventions to combat AMR incorporate targets that are specific, measureable, attainable, relevant, and timely
Mandating a standard susceptibility method across all laboratories in the UK to accurately measure improvement, ensure patient safety, and measure impact

Coordinating a review of progress in the discovery, research, and development of new drugs, including for the veterinary sector

Aligning all future regional and national strategies to combat AMR with the WHO’s Action Plan
Incentivising the UK’s devolved administrations to work collectively to deliver against the UK AMR strategy, by increasing efficiency and reducing costs

Developing a harmonised collection of educational tools that can help the public and those working in human, animal and environmental health, to secure a better understanding of AMR and the principles of antimicrobial stewardship
Addressing the shortfall in the human and financial resources necessary to successfully undertake stewardship in human and animal health

Monitoring the efficacy of all education campaigns

Commissioning a study into the long-term benefits of rapid diagnostics and the necessary paradigm shift in care pathways and GP/patient behaviours

Ensuring all prescribers should have access to training materials that relate to common scenarios encountered in the NHS, with priority given to ensure that those who direct the use of antibiotics for individual patients are able to prescribe effectively and:
• Consider the presence of clear indications
• Avoid contraindications
• Review the antibiotic prescribing of colleagues
• Counsel patients effectively
• Anticipate and respond to adverse effects
• Know how to monitor the success or failure of treatment
• And interpret relevant data

Giving further consideration to the role learned societies play in meeting the complex challenges posed by AMR
As such, the Society stands ready to help the Government transform policy into practice by engaging its huge network of professionals.

GP? Pharmacist? Researcher? Social Scientist? Whatever field you work in, if you’re committed to fighting infection then we want you to join us as a BSAC Member.
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