WHO Launches Drive to Cut Antibiotic Abuse
Content by: South-South News
16 March 2017, New York, USA | South-South News — The Director-General of the World Health Organization, Margaret Chan, and UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed announced on March 16 the formation of an interagency coordination group on antimicrobial resistance (AMR), which they will co-chair.
Talking to reporters in New York, Chan said that without tackling the problem of AMR, “we cannot achieve the SDG 2030 Development Agenda.” She said AMR “is a development issue, it is also important for poverty alleviation, sustainable food production, the environment, particularly water and sanitation as well.” Because of the multi-sectoral nature of the issue, Chan said, “we do require a multi-sectoral response.”
On the issue of antibiotic over-prescription, the Director–General said, “It would be good for governments to put in place regulation and gradually transition to separation of prescribing and sale,” as in many cases doctors profit from the sale of antibiotics. She pointed out that “we also need to look at the demand from patients” and added that “education awareness is important to all partners involved.”
On the budget cuts announced by United States President Donald Trump, Chan said “we will work as a UN family to see in what way we can engage with the US government and to really advocate and share with them the great contribution they have made to global health and how they can continue within a budget cut sort of an environment.”
She added that “every government is cutting budgets, and it’s not new. But we can find ways and means to be efficient, lean, and deliver the results.”
The inter-agency group will support governments across the world, as well as advise on the use and abuse of antibiotics for people and livestock.