Gov’t powering efforts to reduce antimicrobial resistance

as the world celebrates Antimicrobial Resistance Awareness Week

The PPP/C Government through the Health Ministry is powering the efforts to reduce antimicrobial resistance in patients by spreading awareness of the effects of misusing antibiotics.

Health Minister, Dr Frank Anthony on Friday, during the COVID-19 update, told the Department of Public Information (DPI) that “We [health ministry] have to be ready to start working on becoming wise in how we prescribe antibiotics to patients. Patients themselves have to be more cognisant of the importance of how you use antibiotics…when to use antibiotics.”

Antimicrobial Awareness

This comes as Guyana joins the rest of the world in celebrating Antimicrobial Awareness Week 2022.

This year’s awareness week calls on policymakers to encourage health workers and the public to adopt best practices to prevent the emergence and spread of drug-resistant infections.

It also calls for all sectors to encourage the prudent use of antimicrobial medicines and to strengthen preventive measures to address antimicrobial resistance (AMR) under the One Health approach.

Antimicrobials are substances that can be used to prevent microbes (tiny living things that are too small to be seen by the naked eye) from multiplying.

Minister Anthony said that over the years people have been using antibiotics widely in conditions where antibiotics are not recommended.

“If someone has a viral infection and you use an antibiotic then that antibiotic would not kill the virus but we have seen people using antibiotics in very indiscriminate ways…and because of this very indiscriminate use of antibiotics, some of the microbes that would have normally been suspectable to antibiotics have now developed resistance…and because of that, you have to now use different generations of antibiotics to offset these diseases. So, microbial resistance is becoming a very, very serious problem globally,” he said.

Minister of Health, Dr Frank Anthony

Further, the minister noted that health officials will not be able to cure many diseases if persons continue to misuse antibiotics, which causes resistance to develop to the majority of currently available drugs.

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