The Commonwealth Partnerships for Antimicrobial Stewardship scheme, funded by the UK Department for Health and Social Care’s Fleming Fund, funded 14 projects under the Extension programme. These projects ran until June 2022 and worked in the following eight countries: Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia.
CwPAMS aims to leverage the expertise of UK health institutions and technical experts to strengthen the capacity of the national health workforce and institutions in Commonwealth countries to address antimicrobial resistance (AMR) challenges. More information on CwPAMS and the projects funded in the first round of the grant programme is available here.
Grants allocated under the CwPAMS extension placed a central focus on antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) and on developing pharmacy expertise and capacity whilst incorporating and expanding the findings from other infection prevention and control initiatives and strengthening capacity of using clinical microbiology data.
The programme involved Health Partnerships operating in the following 8 countries:
The programme’s aims were to achieve:
These aims were addressed through:
KamCamWIMN – Antimicrobial Stewardship and Infection Prevention Control
Establish a Sustainable Centre of Excellence for Integrated AMS and IPC at Makerere University Hospital
Capacity Sharing for Antimicrobial Stewardship through the Medicines and Therapeutic Committee at Jinja Regional Referral Hospital
Scaling-up interventions for strengthening antimicrobial stewardship in Wakiso district
Enhancing Capacities of Healthcare Providers in the Practice of Antimicrobial Stewardship Programmes: The Role of Local Data and Safe Medicine Practices
Strengthening Antimicrobial Stewardship through improving surveillance and building sustainable capacity and capability in Ledzokuku Krowor Municipal Assembly [LEKMA] Hospital and LEKMA polyclinic
Development and Institution of Antimicrobial Stewardship in the University Hospital, Knust
Developing optimal antimicrobial stewardship capacity and practice in rural and peri-urban healthcare settings in Zambia
Developing Reliable Systems and Practices for Antimicrobial Stewardship in a Hospital Setting in Eastern Province, Zambia: Modelled on Scottish-Ghana AMS programme
Institutionalising AMS at Connaught Hospital
Kakamega and Cambridge Partnership – Working to strengthen Antimicrobial Stewardship at Kakamega County Teaching and Referral Hospital
Building the KCMC-NHCFT antimicrobial stewardship partnership
Training pharmacists as antimicrobial stewardship leads in Malawi
Building capacity of healthcare workers for AMS at a university teaching hospital in Lagos
The Fleming Fund is a UK aid programme, helping low- and middle-income countries tackle antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Its aim is to improve the surveillance of AMR and generate relevant data that is shared nationally and globally.
The Commonwealth Pharmacists Association (CPA) is a UK-based charity that advances health, promotes well-being and improves medicines-related education and use for the benefit of the Commonwealth. By supporting the development of safe and effective systems of medicines management, maximising the skill level and encouraging the better utilization of the pharmacy workforce, the CPA seeks to encourage the optimisation of medicines and health-related advice given to the public, with the aim of improving health outcomes and reducing health inequalities throughout the Commonwealth.
AMR poses a catastrophic threat to us all and yet until recently it has remained a neglected area of global health.
A number of factors can increase the spread of resistant microorganisms. For example, antimicrobial drugs are often used unnecessarily, which increases the risk that microorganisms can become resistant, survive and multiply. In 2016, 490,000 people developed multi-drug resistant TB, and drug resistance is starting to complicate the fight against HIV and malaria as well.
The independent Review on antimicrobial resistance estimated that,
at least 700,000 deaths each year globally are attributable to drug resistance to infections including bacterial infections, malaria and HIV/AIDS.
Unless action is taken, it is thought the burden of deaths from AMR could balloon to 10 million lives each year by 2050 and cost the global economy up to $100 trillion US Dollars.
It is estimated that 5000 deaths are already caused every year in the UK alone because antibiotics no longer work for some infections.
Rising drug resistance is a global hazard and if we do not tackle it, every day procedures such as caesarean sections, cancer therapy, and hip replacements will become extremely dangerous.
Antimicrobial resistance poses a catastrophic threat to us all and yet until recently it has remained a neglected area of global health. At THET we believe that working in partnerships is the best way to strengthen health systems both at home and overseas.
Ben Simms - CEO, THET