The theme of WAAW 2023 is "Preventing antimicrobial resistance together". Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a threat to humans, animals, plants and the environment. It affects us all. This year's theme promotes collaboration across sectors to preserve the efficacy of these critical medicines.
Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) occurs when bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites no longer respond to antimicrobial agents. As a result of drug resistance, antibiotics and other antimicrobial agents become ineffective and infections become difficult or impossible to treat, increasing the risk of disease spread, severe illness and death.
Antimicrobials are agents used to prevent, control and treat infectious diseases in humans, animals and plants. They include antibiotics, fungicides, antiviral agents and parasiticides. Disinfectants, antiseptics, other pharmaceuticals and natural products may also have antimicrobial properties.
Fighting AMR is a truly global endeavour and must be addressed through a One Health approach. To curb it effectively, all sectors must join forces and encourage the prudent use of antimicrobials, as well as preventive measures.
What can we do to help reduce the need for antimicrobials and minimize the emergence of AMR?
* strengthen infection prevention and control in health facilities, farms and food industry premises
* ensure access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene, and vaccines
* implement best practices in food and agricultural production
* minimize pollution and ensure proper waste and sanitation management.