ISLAMABAD-The National Institute of Health (NIH) in collaboration with World Health Organization (WHO) launched a nationwide campaign during World Antibiotic Awareness Week to increase global awareness of antibiotic resistance.

A statement issued by NIH said that the theme of this year’s antibiotic awareness week 2019 is ‘The future of antibiotics depends on us all.’

World Antibiotic Awareness Week (WAAW) aims to increase global awareness of antibiotic resistance, and encourage best practices among the general public, health workers and policy makers to prevent further emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance.

Being the focal point for antibiotic resistance, the National Institute of Health under the auspices of Ministry of National Health Services Regulations and Coordination (NHSRC) has planned series of activities including distribution of awareness materials for general public, press briefing, talk shows, poster competition for kids, seminars and awareness walk etc.

The NIH also aligned provincial regional walks/campaigns during WAAW week at some sites including KTH Peshawar, CHK Karachi, Mayo Hospital & Children Hospital Lahore, BMC Quetta, AIMS, Muzaffarabad, AJK, and GB.

Among all these activities, the National Institute of Health, Ministry of National Health Services Regulations and Coordination Islamabad in collaboration with World Health Organization (WHO) also organized an awareness walk.

The aim of the event was to raise awareness about the threat of antibiotic resistance and the importance of appropriate antibiotic prescribing.

This event will also create awareness regarding the misuse and overuse of antibiotics in humans and animals.

A large number of health professionals from Ministry of National Health Services Regulations and Coordination, Mo NFS&R, EPA, DRAP, academia, media, private sector hospitals, pharmacies, professional organisation, students, partners and media personnel participated in the event. Banners, flyers and caps were also arranged for the walk.

Speaking on the occasion, the Executive Director of NIH, Maj. Gen. Prof. Aamer Ikram said, “AMR is a catastrophe for the world, which must be managed with the utmost urgency.” Dr. Zafar Mirza is taking AMR as a serious public health concern for Pakistan.

He has originated concrete measures in the use of antibiotics and emphasised on safeguarded benefit for both humans and animals. National Institute of Health has developed national level strategies to reduce the use of antibiotics in both the human and advocating the animal sector for intervention in tackling AMR.

The Executive Director said that we are working on the actions which can be taken to improve human health, animal health and prevent disease which will help reduce the use of antibiotics.