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Hong Kong Strategy and Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance (2023-2027) launched and public urged to support Antimicrobial Awareness Week
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     The Government today (November 17) launched the Hong Kong Strategy and Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance (2023-2027) (Action Plan), the second action plan on antimicrobial resistance (AMR), to map out response strategies towards the threat of AMR for the next five years.

     Separately, the Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) took this opportunity to urge members of the public to practise proper use of antibiotics in support of Antimicrobial Awareness Week starting tomorrow (November 18) to November 24 in order to join the fight against the threat of AMR.

     "AMR is considered one of the greatest threats to global health and economies. The Government has all along attached great importance to tackling the issue of AMR. Through the 'One Health' approach, with joint efforts of relevant government departments and organisations, in implementing the first Action Plan over the past five years, positive outcomes have been achieved in minimising the emergence and preventing the spread of AMR in Hong Kong," a government spokesman said.

     Endorsed by the High Level Steering Committee on AMR chaired by the Secretary for Health, the second Action Plan continues to adopt the "One Health" approach involving cross-sector co-ordination and collaboration for the next stage as recommended by international health agencies, and focuses on resistance in bacteria that present an urgent and serious threat to public health.

     The second Action Plan continues with the six key areas of the first Action Plan, which include –

     (a) strengthening knowledge through surveillance and research;
     (b) optimising use of antimicrobials in humans and animals;
     (c) reducing incidence of infection through effective sanitation, hygiene and preventive measures;
     (d) improving public awareness and understanding of AMR through effective communication, education and training;
     (e) encouraging relevant researches on AMR; and
     (f) enhancing partnerships and fostering engagement of relevant stakeholders. 

     Apart from the existing objectives and interventions, the Action Plan also features a number of priority interventions and indicators to enable the Government and stakeholders to pool resources for addressing the threat of AMR more effectively.

     "The Action Plan provides guidance not only for public health and veterinary partners, but also to co-ordinate efforts from all sectors of the community. Clear objectives and time-bound indicators were also set to facilitate the monitoring and evaluation of the Action Plan," the spokesman said.

     Relevant bureaux/departments and organisations, including the Health Bureau, the DH, the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department, the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department and the Hospital Authority will continue to keep abreast of and assess international and local developments and closely work with private hospitals, professional bodies, academia and other stakeholders in implementing the interventions in phases to combat the challenge of AMR.

     With "Contribute Together to Combat Antimicrobial Resistance!" as the slogan this year, Antimicrobial Awareness Week calls on members of the public to play a role in combating the threat of AMR. They are reminded to practise proper use of antibiotics (e.g. stop requesting unnecessary antibiotics from doctors, adhere to doctors' instructions when taking antibiotics, and avoid self-purchase antibiotics without a prescription) and observe good hygienic practices when handling food to minimise cross-contamination by micro-organisms. They are also urged to receive seasonal influenza and COVID-19 vaccinations as one of the effective means to prevent relevant infections and their complications, hence reducing the use of antibiotics.

     ‚ÄčThe full text of the Action Plan has been uploaded to the website of the CHP of the DH. For health education materials and more information on AMR, please visit CHP's thematic website on AMR and Facebook Page.
 
Ends/Thursday, November 17, 2022
Issued at HKT 12:00
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