Today, the European Commission has adopted its new EU ‘One Health’ Action Plan to tackle AMR, along with its first deliverable, EU Guidelines for the prudent use of antimicrobials in human health. The Guidelines aim to reduce inappropriate use and promote prudent use of antimicrobials in humans, with a special focus on antibacterial agents. They target all actors – national, regional and local governments, doctors, nurses, pharmacists, hospital administrators and others who play a role in antimicrobial use. They complement infection prevention and control guidelines which may exist at national level and will be published in all official EU languages.
The guidelines are based on a technical report prepared by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) with input from experts and stakeholders. They suggest measures, good clinical practices, systems and processes for EU countries to consider when developing and implementing their national strategies. They also include activities that may be taken by international organisations and agencies in support of national strategy development and implementation.
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a priority for the Commission and progress towards more prudent use of antimicrobials in both humans and animals are key objectives of the EU Action Plan on AMR. Guidelines on prudent use of antimicrobials in veterinary medicines were published in 2015. In 2016 Council Conclusions called on the Commission and Member States to develop EU guidelines on prudent use of antimicrobials in human medicine to support national guidelines and recommendations.