Department of Health and Social Care
NHS to partner with Commonwealth nations to stop superbugs
Volunteer NHS clinical staff will work alongside local health workers in Ghana, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia to tackle antimicrobial resistance (AMR).
The new Commonwealth Partnerships for Antimicrobial Stewardship (AMS) scheme is funded by the UK Department of Health and Social Care’s Fleming Fund.
The scheme will send up to 12 volunteer NHS pharmacists and specialist nurses to Ghana, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia to work with local health workers against AMR.
It will see NHS and national teams work together to help to keep antibiotics working better for longer and stop the emergence of superbugs. They will do this by:
- improving the detection and monitoring of resistant infections at hospital level
- taking measures to reduce infection
- putting steps in place to use antibiotics effectively
It will be delivered in collaboration with the Commonwealth Pharmacists Association (CPA) and the Tropical Health Education Trust (THET), an international NGO with expertise in delivering global health partnerships.
AMR occurs when micro-organisms survive exposure to a medicine that would normally kill them, such as antibiotics, antimalarials and antivirals. These micro-organisms are often referred to as ‘superbugs’.
The independent review on antimicrobial resistance estimated that at least 700,000 deaths globally each year are from drug-resistant infections such as bacterial infections, malaria and HIV/AIDS.
The review also estimated that deaths from AMR could increase to 10 million each year by 2050 and cost the global economy up to $100 trillion US dollars.
It is thought that 5,000 deaths are already caused every year in the UK alone by antibiotics no longer working for some infections. If we do not find a solution, everyday procedures such as caesarean sections, cancer therapy, and hip replacements will become extremely dangerous.
Chief Medical Officer for England, Professor Dame Sally Davies, said:
I am delighted that UK aid – provided through the government’s Fleming Fund – will enable these vital partnerships between our fantastic NHS staff and their counterparts overseas to take place.
AMR poses a risk to us all, wherever we call home – collaboration of this kind with our friends and neighbours internationally will be all the more important if we are to tackle this challenge together.
This scheme will play a crucial role in allowing specialists to share expertise and strengthen approaches to antimicrobial stewardship in hospitals both at home and abroad.
Latest News from
Department of Health and Social Care
PPE contract legal challenge18/05/2021 15:38:00
Response to a challenge from Good Law Project to the Department of Health and Social Care on whether the government acted lawfully in awarding specific personal protective equipment (PPE) contracts.
More than 20 million UK adults receive both doses of COVID-19 vaccine18/05/2021 10:10:10
More than 36 million people in the UK have been vaccinated with 1 dose and 20 million have received 2 doses.
Football stars hail COVID-19 vaccine as the 'best defence' of 202117/05/2021 16:10:00
Harry Redknapp, Chris Kamara and Eniola Aluko among the football stars urging people to get COVID-19 vaccine in a new short film.
Most vulnerable offered second dose of COVID-19 vaccine earlier to help protect against variants17/05/2021 14:20:00
Action is part of measures to tackle rising cases of the B1.617.2 variant of concern.
Ministers showcase the UK’s green future ahead of COP26 climate change conference in Glasgow17/05/2021 11:28:00
COP26 President-Designate Alok Sharma marked less than six months to go until the climate change summit this November, as Government Ministers travelled across the country to see how the UK is greening all parts of society.
Employers unite to encourage over a million staff to get the COVID-19 vaccine17/05/2021 10:10:10
Leading employers across the UK including Asda, IKEA and Santander come together to encourage their staff to get the COVID-19 vaccine when eligible.
New measures to boost response to the B1.617.2 variant14/05/2021 16:10:00
Action is being taken to control the variant first identified in India which is beginning to spread in certain areas across the country.
Findings from latest COVID-19 REACT-1 study published14/05/2021 10:10:10
Over 127,000 volunteers tested in England between 15 April and 3 May 2021 as part of one of the most significant COVID-19 studies in the world.
Calorie labelling on menus to be introduced in cafes, restaurants and takeaways13/05/2021 16:33:00
Government renews drive to tackle obesity and improve the nation’s health.