Health officials draft anti-microbial resistance action plan

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Officials within the Ministry of Health are creating what they have termed “a three-year Antimicrobial Resistance National Plan of Action” which the ministry hopes to be finalised close to the end of May.
An April 27 press release from the Ministry of Health stated that the Minister of Health, Molwyn Joseph, will present the plan to the World Health Assembly next month.
Medical Officer with responsibility for Epidemiology and Surveillance, Dr Anju Smith has stated that antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a “public health threat that is of major concern globally”.
Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) is the ability of microorganisms (bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites) to stop antimicrobials (such as antibiotics, antivirals and antimalarials) from working against them. As a result, standard treatments become ineffective, infections persist and may spread to others, leading to epidemics.
Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) consultant Dr Jean Marie Rwangabwoba, who recently visited Antigua & Barbuda for discussions, indicated that there are concerns about the importation of antibiotics into the country and how they are utilised.
Dr Rwangabwoba said stricter policies and regulations of the same are required to ensure that people who bring in these products have a licence to do so and added that non-adherence to treatment as prescribed by physicians is also a major problem which can lead to the development of resistance.

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