This year, the event focused on the action the profession can take to preserve the efficacy of antimicrobial treatments, which are essential resources to protect human health as well as animal health and welfare. Throughout the day, and all around the world, the many initiatives led by veterinarians to raise awareness on this essential issue in their countries will come under the spotlight.
Antimicrobial Resistance - From awareness to action
The availability and use of antimicrobial drugs has transformed the practice of human and animal medicine. Infections that were once lethal are now treatable, and the use of antimicrobial agents has advanced global health as well as animal health, which is a key component of animal welfare, food security and safety.
Safeguarding the efficacy of these life-saving medications, as well as their availability and effectiveness for both human and veterinary use, is essential to preserve our future. However, overuse and misuse of these drugs in humans, animals and plants sectors has dramatically accelerated the emergence of resistance to antimicrobials.
During its General Assembly in September 2016, the United Nations acknowledged that “Antimicrobial resistance reduces our ability to protect the health of animals and therefore is threatening safe and sustainable food and agriculture production".
Veterinary practitioners have a key part to play in the fight against antimicrobial resistance: they are the direct interlocutors of paraprofessionals as well as farmers and animal owners, and can trigger a sustainable change in behaviour towards a responsible and prudent antimicrobial use.
“Through their role in supervising the use of antimicrobials, offering professional advice to farmers and animal owners and collaborating with the human health sector, veterinarians have a key role to play in combatting the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance. They are at the forefront to promote sound animal husbandry hygiene methods and the implementation of accurate vaccination strategies” highlights Dr Monique Eloit, OIE Director General. “They have the responsibility to raise awareness among farmers and animal owners on the prudent use of antibiotics and these actions are supported worldwide by the OIE Global Strategy against antimicrobial resistance”.
Saturday April 29, 2017/ OIE.