Antibiotics and antimicrobial resistance

Antimicrobial resistance (also known as antibiotic resistance) is an emerging public health issue which has risen to prominence in recent years as the situation has become more serious.
Antibiotics are a cornerstone of modern medicine, used to treat many infections which in the past would have been far more serious. If antibiotic resistance becomes widespread, antibiotics will stop working and these infections will become untreatable.
“If we fail to act, we are looking at an almost unthinkable scenario where antibiotics no longer work and we are cast back into the dark ages of medicine" – David Cameron, UK Prime Minister, 2016
A recent independent review on antimicrobial resistance (linked below) has this to say:
“The real implications of spreading drug resistance will be felt the world over, with developing countries and large emerging nations bearing the brunt of this problem. Routine surgeries and minor infections will become life- threatening once again and the hard won victories against infectious diseases of the last fifty years will be jeopardized. Hospital stays and expenses, for both public health care providers and for out-of-pocket payers will increase significantly. Drug resistant infections are already on the rise with numbers suggesting that up to 50,000 lives are lost each year to antibiotic-resistant infections in Europe and the US alone. Globally, at least 700,000 die each year of drug resistance in illnesses such as bacterial infections, malaria, HIV/Aids or tuberculosis.” - Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, 2016

This page is designed predominately for health professionals, to gather together useful resources which may help in their clinical roles. 


A list of useful local and national resources.
Annual Report on the UK 5 Year Antimicrobial Resistance Strategy
The UK 5 year antimicrobial resistance (AMR) strategy 2013 to 2018 represents an ambitious programme to slow the development and spread of AMR taking a “One-Health” approach spanning people, animals, agriculture and the wider environment.  This is published on behalf of the high level steering group responsible for driving delivery of the UK AMR strategy.
Antibiotic Guardian project
To slow resistance we need to cut the unnecessary use of antibiotics. The public, students and educators, farmers, the veterinary and medical communities and professional organisations can become Antibiotic Guardians.  Choose one simple pledge about how you’ll make better use of antibiotics and help save these vital medicines from becoming obsolete.
Antimicrobial resistance page from Health Education England
Health Education England is a key stakeholder in the implementation of the Government’s five year strategy to tackle antimicrobial resistance.  It work to promote awareness of antimicrobial resistance, encourage those prescribing, dispensing and administrating antibiotics to do so responsibly and with an understanding of antimicrobial resistance, and ensure that it is included in the preventing, management and control of infection curricula for human medicine, nursing, pharmacy, dentistry and other professionals.
Antimicrobial resistance factsheet from WHO

Key facts from the World Health Organsiation.

TARGET antimicrobial stewardship toolkit for primary care
TARGET stands for: Treat Antibiotics Responsibly, Guidance, Education, Tools.  The TARGET Antibiotics Toolkit aims to help influence prescribers’ and patients’ personal attitudes, social norms and perceived barriers to optimal antibiotic prescribing. It includes a range of resources that can each be used to support prescribers’ and patients’ responsible antibiotic use, helping to fulfil CPD and revalidation requirements.

Fingertips- Public Health England AMR local indicators with profile data
These profiles contain a selection of data on Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and Healthcare associated infection (HCAI) related indicators. These data include trends for antibiotic prescribing in primary care and HCAI in acute NHS Trusts and can be viewed at practice level.

NHS England quality premium guidance 2016-17
The scheme is intended to reward clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) for improvements in the quality of the services that they commission and for associated improvements in health outcomes and reducing inequalities.  It consists of two parts: Part a) reduction in the number of antibiotics prescribed in primary care Part b) reduction in the proportion of broad spectrum antibiotics prescribed in primary care.
The Review on Antimicrobial Resistance pages and resources
The Review on AMR has been assessing solutions to avoid the costs of AMR – including the supply of new drugs, the use of diagnostics, surveillance, infection control, alternative treatments and the use of antibiotics in agriculture. These themes form the basis of the final report to the UK Prime Minister, with recommendations for global solutions, published in the summer of 2016.

Antimicrobial Resistance Resource Handbook from Public Health England
This handbook collates national resources on antimicrobial resistance, antimicrobial stewardship and infection prevention and control.
North&East Devon Formulary page on antibiotics South&West Devon formulary page on antibiotics
The aims of the Formulary Primary Care Infections Guidance are to provide a simple, effective, economical and empirical approach to the treatment of common infections, and to minimise the emergence of bacterial resistance in the community.
Advice is based on the HPA Management of Infection Guidance for Primary Care, adapted with local specialists.
Professional judgement should be used in the management of infections and patients should be involved in the decision.


This area will contain relevant local or national news stories. 
Antibiotic awareness campaign receives national award for its community focus
The locally produced Listen to your Gut campaign has received recognition with a national award.

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