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Healthcare infrastructure needed to fight AMR

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By Mercy Kelani

There is need for coordinated effort to aptly implement AMR control measures.

Prof. Adekunle Olowe, the Group Leader of the Bacteriology Unit at the Centre for Emerging and Re-emerging Infectious Disease within the College of Health Sciences at LAUTECH in Ogbomoso, emphasized the urgent need for better healthcare Infrastructure to combat the increasing issue of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in Nigeria. On June 14, 2024, in Osogbo, Prof. Olowe emphasized the urgent requirement for a coordinated, cross-sectoral strategy to enforce impactful antimicrobial regulations, as per a statement received by reporters.

He stressed the importance of implementing a range of strategies involving different sectors of society in order to address antimicrobial resistance effectively. Prof. Olowe emphasized the need for a coordinated and collaborative effort across various sectors to successfully implement antimicrobial control measures. He emphasized that the increased economic strain has had a major effect on the cost of healthcare services in Nigeria, especially for those living in rural areas with limited access to medical facilities.

Implementing AMR stewardship requires a unified & multi-faceted strategy.

It is imperative for government and private sectors to work together to improve healthcare systems, provide fair access to medical facilities, and establish effective antimicrobial stewardship programs, as highlighted by Prof. Olowe’s remarks. On the other hand, Olowe suggested that by utilizing antibiotics efficiently, adopting evidence-based strategies, and involving stakeholders from different industries within the nation, the country could reduce the proliferation of resistant infections. This would also protect the effectiveness of crucial medications for the generations to come.

In order to effectively address AMR in Nigeria, it is crucial to make a long-term commitment to investing in healthcare infrastructure and working together across all sectors of society. The successful implementation of antimicrobial stewardship requires a unified and multi-faceted strategy. Collaboration among government agencies, healthcare providers, professional societies, academia, and Civil Society organizations is vital in the fight against Antimicrobial Resistance. The National Action Plan aims to provide a framework for these stakeholders to work together effectively.

Nigeria’s healthcare system is struggling due to scarce resources.

Key initiatives include enforcing prescription-only access to antibiotics and regulating the quality of antibiotics available to the public, which are essential steps in ensuring the promotion of responsible antibiotic use. Nigeria’s healthcare system is struggling due to scarce resources, with the added complication of facing more challenges. The economic strain goes beyond just healthcare expenses, affecting people’s ability to work and sustain their way of life, especially in rural regions with limited access to medical services.

Encouraging thoughtful antibiotic use, following proven practices, and involving stakeholders from different fields can help Nigeria improve antibiotic usage, reduce the spread of resistant infections, and protect the effectiveness of these important drugs for the future. It is crucial for antimicrobial stewardship programs to succeed and address the threat of antimicrobial resistance that there is a continued dedication, allocation of resources, and cooperation at all levels – local, national, and international. The rise of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) presents a growing threat to the successful control and management of a wide variety of infections stemming from bacteria, parasites, viruses, and fungi.

Related Article: UK Announces £210m Funding for tackling AMR

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is the result of bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites adapting and evolving to the point where medications are no longer effective in treating infections. This leads to a greater threat of disease transmission, severe health issues, and potential fatalities. When medications are rendered useless, infections can linger within the body, heightening the chance of spreading to others. Antimicrobials like antibiotics, antivirals, antifungals, and Antiparasitics are essential medications for combating infections in humans, animals, and plants. When microorganisms become resistant to these drugs, they are known as superbugs, posing a significant threat to Public Health.


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