Ongoing curricula improvements, interdisciplinary collaboration and practical experience are needed in order to better equip the pharmaceutical workforce with the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to mitigate the threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and to improve antimicrobial stewardship (AMS), according to findings published by the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) today.
FIP’s “Antimicrobial resistance and stewardship education: Supporting the pharmaceutical workforce in AMR and AMS” report presents a survey of educators, practitioners and students from 81 countries, exploring the educational components of AMR for the pharmacy workforce based on the World Health Organization “Health workers’ education and training on AMR: Curriculum guide”. Curricula need to evolve consistently to encompass critical subjects such as pharmacogenomics, adverse event investigation, prescription scrutiny and record-keeping, according to the survey findings. Contamination risks and monitoring should also be emphasised, as well as diagnostic data analysis, transmission prevention and substandard medicines reporting.
In addition, the report includes 12 case studies providing insights into the diverse approaches taken to address AMR through education in Costa Rica, Croatia, Lebanon, Tanzania, Ireland, Norway, Nigeria, the UAE and the European Union.
In conclusion, the authors of the report suggest pathways to address the challenges posed by AMR and to continue developing the pharmaceutical workforce towards this goal, such as through strengthening surveillance by enhancing skills in collecting and analysing antimicrobial consumption data. “It is vital that the pharmaceutical workforce is equipped with relevant and up-to-date knowledge, skills and attitudes required to tackle AMR. The time to act is now, and by equipping the pharmaceutical workforce, we can collectively forge a more resilient future against the threat of AMR,” said Prof. Cátia Caneiras, co-chair of the FIP commission on AMR and co-author of the report. “This transformation will empower the pharmaceutical workforce to become proactive advocates and agents of change in combating AMR.”