Ukraine develops National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance

WHO Ukraine/Konstantin Vozniuk

Left to right: Mrs Saskia Nahrgang, Technical Officer WHO/EURO, Mr Alexey Bobrik, Technical Officer, WHO Ukraine and Mr Andriy Rozstalnyy, Specialist of FAO Regional Office.

On 7–9 February 2018, the First National Consultation on the Development and Implementation of the National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) took place in Kyiv. The participants included representatives from key organizations working in human health, animal health, the environment sector and academia, the ministries of health and agriculture, and professional associations. The diversity of participants was designed to ensure a multisectoral, One Health approach as outlined in the Global Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance. The meeting was facilitated by WHO with the engagement of the One Health partner organizations – the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).

Stakeholders have a high level of awareness and growing understanding of the main issues related to AMR in Ukraine. In 2017, the Ministry of Health established a new working group on AMR and requested WHO to provide technical assistance for development of a national action plan on AMR containment.

The objectives of the National AMR Consultation were as follows:

  • facilitate a process for the development and implementation of a comprehensive multisectoral national action plan on AMR that is aligned with the Global Action Plan;
  • establish a common understanding among stakeholders of the components and attributes of an effective national action plan on AMR;
  • provide guidance on the national coordination and governance to develop and implement an effective national action plan on AMR;
  • work through the building blocks of 4 selected priority strategies.

As a result of the meeting, national stakeholders gained a common understanding of the Global Action Plan. Participants worked on the translation of strategic priorities into operational planning and outputs of a comprehensive intersectoral national action plan for Ukraine. The national stakeholders drafted the first components of the National Action Plan with agreed strategic objectives, including activities, responsible organizations and timelines. The remaining challenges, needs for further support and next steps were identified.

Antibiotics have long been regarded as one of the most significant medical achievements of the 20th century. These medicines have saved countless lives including those of individuals living with diseases such as cancer or diabetes, and those undergoing surgical procedures. Unfortunately, this very success has accelerated the development of AMR. Therefore, in May 2015 the World Health Assembly approved the Global Action Plan on AMR, encouraging countries in an all-out effort to develop their own multisectoral national action plans.