Dr Sally Roberts, Clinical Lead for the HQSC, IPC Programme
The New Zealand Antimicrobial Resistance Action Plan was jointly developed by the Ministry of Health, Ministry for Primary Industries and representatives from across the human health, animal health and agriculture sectors. The document draws upon the findings from Antimicrobial Resistance - New Zealand's current situation and identified areas for action, released earlier this year.
World Antibiotic Awareness Week is when the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) together campaign for responsible use of antibiotics in humans and animals to reduce the emergence of antibiotic resistance.
Many microbes that commonly cause infectious disease in humans and animals are becoming resistant to the antimicrobial medicines used to treat these diseases.
This evidence update from the Royal Society summarises the latest about antimicrobial resistance in New Zealand.
Factsheet produced by the Royal Society: If you catch a drug-resistant infection, it may take much longer to treat than other infections. You may require expensive antibiotics with harsh side effects, or require surgery to remove infected areas. In the worst-case scenario, people have died from infections caused by bacteria that are resistant to all available antibiotics.
One in every nine patients who go into hospital in Australia suffers a complication – about 900,000 patients each year. If they stay in overnight, the figure rises to one in four – about 725,000 patients each year. A patient’s risk of developing a complication varies dramatically depending on which hospital they go to: in some cases, the additional risk of a complication at the worst-performing hospitals can be four times higher than at the best performers. If all hospitals lifted their safety performance to the level of the best 10 per cent of Australian hospitals, the complication rate across the nation would fall by more than a quarter.
Antibiotic resistance in our pathogens is medicine’s climate change: caused by human activity, and resulting in more extreme outcomes. Resistance emerges in microbial populations when antibiotics act on phenotypic variance within the population.