IMA-NCDC-WHO Symposium on Antimicrobial Resistance – Need for Action

A symposium on antimicrobial resistance (AMR), jointly organized by the Indian Medical Association, the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and WHO Country Office for India brought together IMA office bearers from state and local branches on 11 November 2017 at New Delhi.

The symposium was aimed at raising awareness, standardising AMR messages and drafting an IMA roadmap to contain AMR.

Dr K.K. Aggarwal, President IMA, emphasized on the optimal use of antibiotics and need of an IMA Policy on AMR. He recommended that an IMA standing committee work for the next five years to take forward all the efforts on the issue and formulate an IMA Antibiotic Policy.

In his address, Dr A.C. Dhariwal, Director, NCDC stressed the importance of continuity in efforts for AMR containment. He recognized that the symposium was a good introduction to the World Antibiotic Awareness Week.

Appreciating India’s National Action Plan on AMR containment, Dr Henk Bekedam, WHO Representative to India lauded the efforts of the Health Ministry, NCDC and ICMR in combating AMR.

Dr Bekedam commended IMA for their excellent initiative. “We need more champions in the field to make a difference in AMR,” he said

“An era without antibiotics is looming large unless we take effective action. This disaster has already affected many countries, including India,” said Dr Bekedam. He stressed upon country level surveillance systems, effective policy implementation, such as red line initiative, and the importance of infection prevention and control.

The inaugural session was followed by the launch of AMR information, education and communication (IEC) products for awareness dissemination. Technical sessions comprised of presentations by senior officials from IMA, NCDC, WHO Country Office for India and Tata Memorial Cancer Hospital, Kolkata.

Among the dignitaries present on the occasion were Dr Sunil Gupta, Additional Director, NCDC and Dr Tandon, Secretary-General of IMA.