Bangladesh raises awareness on anti-microbial resistance

Dhaka, 19 November 2018: World Antibiotic Awareness Week (WAAW) has been observed from 12-18 November 2018 with a commitment to increase global awareness of antibiotic resistance and to encourage best practices among the public, health workers and policy makers to avoid the further emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance.

World Health Organization (WHO) Bangladesh provided technical support to the Directorate General of Drug Administration (DGDA), Government of Bangladesh to organize advocacy meetings of key stakeholders in the health sector for creating awareness about the importance of antibiotic resistance.

Prior to the WAAW, WHO facilitated an expert consultation to select appropriate advocacy materials for dissemination to the public and health professionals. The experts selected five posters from materials developed for the global campaigns, which were duly translated to Bangla language and customized to suit the Bangladeshi context. The posters raise awareness on different aspects of antibiotic resistance and were distributed to upazilas, districts and tertiary level health facilities across the country, aiming to make visitors as well as service providers aware of antibiotic resistance and rational use of antibiotics.

Antibiotic resistance awareness poster in Bangla language is visible in the outdoor of Barisal Sadar Hospital
WHO Bangladesh/ M. Rahmat Ali

On the opening day of the WAAW on 12 November 2018, the DGDA with technical support from WHO organized a day-long workshop highlighting the importance of the week, the situation of antibiotic use in Bangladesh and possible ways of mitigating the challenges, relating to antibiotic resistance. More than 100 participants, representing senior Government officials, representatives of donors, drug manufacturers and academia participated in the workshop.

The participants of the workshop expressed their concern about inadequate official arrangement for anti-microbial vigilance and called upon the Government to take necessary measures for creating mass awareness on the adverse impact of antibiotic resistance.

The persistent overuse and misuse of antibiotics in human and animal health have encouraged the emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance, which occurs when microbes, such as bacteria, become resistant to the drugs used to treat them.