The EU has launched a second action plan on combatting Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) on June 29th. Building on a previous strategy which ran from 2011 to 2016, the plan cements the “One Health” approach to Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR), by addressing antibiotic use in both humans and animals. It outlines 75 actions which the EU will strive to undertake across three strategic pillars:
- Making the EU a best practice region: In order to ensure greater coordination and surveillance of antibiotic use, the EU reiterated its support for Member States in establishing, implementing and monitoring national action plans which will be extended to include environmental aspects. EU agencies, including the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), will draw up a list of “key outcome indicators” by the end of September, based on data already collected, to measure EU & individual Member States’ progress on antibiotic use;
- Boost research, development and innovation: The EU aims to address knowledge gaps through funding and partnership programmes which will focus on effective infection control and surveillance, including new diagnostics, and developing new therapeutics and preventive vaccines;
Shaping the Global Agenda: The EU will aim to become a global leader on the issue and ensure greater collaboration within international organisations such as the WHO and OECD.
A legislative proposal on the process of bringing veterinary medicines to the market is also currently being discussed by the EU institutions and is likely to result in enhanced controls in terms of reporting on individual farm level antibiotic use and restrictions to ensure more prudent use of antibiotics.
By Alison Graham
European Affairs Executive
28 May 2021