Meeting of Antimicrobial Medicine Consumption Network

11–12 June 2018, Copenhagen, Denmark

At the Sixty-eighth World Health Assembly, held in May 2015, Member States adopted the Global Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance. An important element of the plan is monitoring the consumption of antimicrobial medicines.

As an initiative of WHO/Europe, the Antimicrobial Medicine Consumption (AMC) Network aims to support data collection in countries of the WHO European Region that are not part of the European Surveillance of Antimicrobial Consumption Network (ESAC-Net), coordinated by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) in the European Union (EU).

Seventeen Member States, as well as Kosovo (in accordance with Security Council resolution 1244 (1999)) participate in the AMC Network.

The 2018 Meeting of the Antimicrobial Medicines Consumption (AMC) Network was held on 11–12 June 2018, in UN City, Copenhagen. AMC Network members discussed analyses of their national AMC data and their country activities to support the appropriate use of antibiotics. In addition, the meeting introduced the concepts of antimicrobial stewardship programmes with invited experts from the ESCMID Study Group for Antimicrobial Stewardship (ESGAP).

The invited experts spoke of the what, how and who of antimicrobial stewardship with special emphasis on the importance of strategies for behaviour change, and presented some practical examples of hospital-based stewardship programmes. Some experiences with antimicrobial stewardship activities in network member countries were shared. Network members were especially keen on learning about how others have been addressing enforcement of laws restricting over-the-counter sales of antibiotics, recognizing it as a common concern in the network.

This year’s AMC Network meeting was followed by the Joint Meeting of the Antimicrobial Resistance, Antimicrobial Consumption and Healthcare-associated Infections Networks, jointly held by the ECDC and WHO/Europe, 13–15 June 2018. The joint meeting brought together all European surveillance networks to share experiences and good practices, and to discuss future collaboration and joint activities across the European Region.

The AMC Network and ESAC-Net had joint sessions for the first time. It was a great opportunity to share challenges in data collection and analysis and best practices in AMC surveillance from both networks. Some important discussions took place on which AMC indicators to use for antimicrobial stewardship purposes. Indicators from the EU-funded DRIVE-AB project (defining and implementing responsible antibiotic use) were discussed along with the metrics used by ESAC-Net and the AMC Network. Indicators for AMC monitoring in the animal sector were presented. ESAC-Net and the AMC Network will continue collaboration with sharing of data and methods in order to provide a European Region-wide perspective on antimicrobial consumption.