It must be — as an essential component of the response to the antimicrobial drug resistance problem
The growing threat of antimicrobial drug resistance (AMR) is attracting the attention of national governments and international organisations. In the words of Margaret Chan, Director-General of the World Health Organization, “We are hearing one alarm bell after another.”1 This is apparent in primary care, where the frequency of antibiotic-resistant infections is increasing. The emergence of AMR is a multifaceted societal problem that requires action from a range of actors, including the pharmaceutical, agricultural and food production industries.2 But it is the health care sector, where antibiotics are prescribed and patients with resistant infections are seen, that the impact of AMR is most acute. This is especially relevant in Australia, where antibiotic consumption is among the highest of the OECD countries.3
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