The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) announced Feb. 24 the publication of the fourth annual report on antimicrobial agents intended for use in animals, which provides a better global understanding of the use patterns of antimicrobial agents and the progress countries are making to use antimicrobials prudently and responsibly.
OIE said the report marks four years of data collection and close collaboration between the organization and its member countries. The efforts of the animal health sector to ensure that antimicrobial agents are used responsibly are key components that have helped in the development of an increasingly precise database that contributes to national and global surveillance and monitoring systems on antimicrobial use in the animal sector.
OIE said 153 countries participated in the fourth round of data collection, demonstrating sustained national monitoring across all regions. An increasing level of engagement has been received from countries that are able to provide quantitative data. The information presented in the fourth annual report represents the commitment of countries to report more accurate data sets that can be used to as an evidence base from which to optimize the responsible use of antimicrobial agents, such as regional comparisons, classification of antimicrobial agents for use in food animals or records of antimicrobial quantities used and animal kilograms.
At a national level, the annual report observes the implementation of National Action Plans on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR), which place a priority on the national capacity for the quantities of antimicrobial agents to be surveyed and monitored. It is through monitoring that countries are able to establish baseline information on antimicrobial use, measure progress and evaluate the effects of regulatory frameworks to show how antimicrobials are being used prudently, OIE said.
"The development of a robust global database built to increase the global understanding of the use of antimicrobials in animals is an ongoing objective of the OIE Strategy on Antimicrobial Resistance," OIE director general Dr. Monique Eloit noted. "Furthermore, it is also our collaboration with member countries and their improvement of national capacity to survey and monitor antimicrobial use that has had a positive impact on the database. The commitment to monitoring being undertaken by OIE and our member countries through their National Action Plans on AMR are invaluable to the collection of data from animal health sector."
Additionally, OIE said national-level surveillance and monitoring of data on antimicrobial use has demonstrated the importance and utility globally through other monitoring reports, such as the "Tripartite Monitoring & Evaluation Framework" for the Global Action Plan on AMR and the "Report of the Secretary-General of the United Nations" on AMR.
While the annual report provides analysis and understanding within the global and regional context of antimicrobial use in the animal sector, OIE also noted the capacity building it has spearheaded as another accomplishment. To date, 265 representatives from national, regional and global level offices and organizations have been trained in global database-focused workshops that aim to support countries as they optimize their antimicrobial use data collection systems, the international agency said.