NHS staff are invited to apply for a new scheme to help tackle antimicrobial resistance overseas

The call for proposals for the Commonwealth Partnerships for Antimicrobial Stewardship project is now open.

In September, the Fleming Fund announced the Commonwealth Partnerships for Antimicrobial Stewardship (AMS) which will support links between NHS staff and peers in hospitals in commonwealth countries across Africa. This project will be delivered by the Tropical Health and Education Trust (THET) and the Commonwealth Pharmacists Association (CPA).

The call for partnership proposals is now open. We are now pleased to be inviting multidisciplinary teams of pharmacists, doctors, specialist nurses and other healthcare workers to apply for a grant of up to £75,000 to deliver a partnership project with a health institution in Zambia, Tanzania, Uganda or Ghana. These projects should aim to improve antimicrobial stewardship and prescribing practice in partner countries.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a natural occurrence, however, due to overuse and misuse of antibiotics the rate at which AMR is occurring is exponentially increasing. This misuse threatens modern medicine and jeopardises the safety of routine operations such as caesarean sections and hernia repairs. To tackle this threat the use of antibiotics needs to be optimised through antimicrobial stewardship. The role of pharmacists, doctors and specialist nurses is key to guard antibiotics and to ensure they are used effectively.

As part of the Fleming Fund, this newly launched project will work with partner countries to build AMR, antimicrobial use, surveillance capacity as well as supporting the development of policy and practice for the appropriate use of antibiotics.

“Pharmacy skills play an essential role in antimicrobial stewardship. In deploying the expertise of NHS pharmacists to partner countries, the projects will lead to more effective antibiotic surveillance, control and prescribing. In sharing the knowledge and best practices that have been adopted by the NHS our staff can help tackle the threat of AMR on a global scale."

Professor Keith Ridge, Chief Pharmaceutical Officer for England.

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