Animal Medicines Australia is urging all animal owners, farmers and veterinarians to redouble efforts to “spread awareness, stop resistance” during World Antimicrobial Awareness Week 18-24 November.
Executive Director Ben Stapley said that responsible and judicious use of antimicrobials when they are needed continues to be a focus of the animal health sector.
“The responsible use of antimicrobials is a shared duty and that is why we have partnered with other organisations to continue to promote best practice. Expert technical advice is essential to ensuring that antimicrobials continue to be effective and available into the future,” Mr Stapley said.
“This is a ‘One Health’ challenge and implementing best practice will reduce resistance and protect animal health and welfare.
“Prevention is our first line of defence and is key to reducing the need for antibiotics. Vaccination, good biosecurity and overall health and well-being of animals all play a part.
“Early detection of disease through improved monitoring and cutting edge diagnostics give animal health providers the best chance to provide treatment at the earliest opportunity and before an outbreak spreads.
“When it comes to treating a bacterial infection in an animal, there is often no viable alternative to antibiotics. However ensuring that veterinarians, farmers and animal owners have access to the right information regarding antimicrobial stewardship is the best step to ensuring that these medicines continue to be an effective and available therapeutic tool.”
Animal Medicines Australia is “spreading awareness and stopping resistance” through:
- partnering with the Australian Veterinary Association, with contributions from livestock groups and others, to develop expert prescribing guidelines for major livestock species.
- sponsoring the Australian AMR Vet Collective, an online forum by veterinarians for veterinarians providing practical advice to help informed evidence-based decisions.
- supporting the second Australian Veterinary Antimicrobial Stewardship Conference bringing together all those who manage animal health to contribute to the growing number of antimicrobial stewardship initiatives underway in Australia.
The Animal Health Sector Commitments and Actions on Antibiotic Use (2017) outlined 5 principles for the industry’s approach to the challenge of antimicrobial resistance. These principles guided the development of the Roadmap to Reducing the Need for Antibiotics.