Charles Sturt University
Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation

Supporting veterinarians to reduce antimicrobial resistance

Graham Centre researchers are spearheading a new initiative to help veterinarians make informed decisions in treating infections to reduce the likelihood of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) developing.

The AMR Vet Collective has been developed by Associate Professor Jane Heller and Dr Kellie Thomas from the Graham Centre and School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences at Charles Sturt University and Professor Jacqui Norris from the University of Sydney.

Dr Jane Heller and Dr Kellie ThomasDr Thomas (pictured right) said antibiotic-resistant bacteria are currently assessed as the greatest risk to human and animal health.

“Also known as drug-resistant infections, antimicrobial resistance (AMR) occurs when microorganisms, such as bacteria are able to resist the effects of medicines that have previously been able to destroy or inactivate them.

“Antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) is a systematic approach to using the medicines in the most optimal and responsible way, to both effectively treat sick patients and animals, and also minimise the likelihood of resistance developing.”

A new website brings together practical resources and current information about AMR and stewardship so vets can make informed, evidence-based decisions in daily practice. Visit the website to find out more.

Associate Professor Heller (pictured left) said the online resource aims to help vets engage with the issue by translating the science about why it’s important and providing links to useable resources.

“We hope that the AMR Vet Collective will connect and engage people in the AMR and AMS space,” she said.

Dr Thomas is excited to be creating something purely to support veterinarians.

“It’s important because no one of us can do this on our own. We need shared understanding and shared behaviour change on a mass scale to help keep our antimicrobials effective and we can’t do that without connection and engagement.”

Later this year the team hopes to launch an online AMS course, which has been contributed to by all vet schools across Australia and New Zealand as well as some other leading experts from industry.

The project has been funded by the Australian Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment.

It aligns with Australia’s National Action Plan on AMR, which is in support of the World Health Organisations Global Action Plan.

 

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