The CPA’s World Antimicrobial Awareness Week Campaign 2021


The Commonwealth Pharmacists Association (CPA), in partnership with the Tropical Health Education Trust (THET) and funded by the Fleming Fund, developed the Commonwealth Partnerships for Antimicrobial Stewardship (CwPAMS) programme. The CPA also has a longstanding history of running campaigns on World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (WAAW), which takes place annually between the 18th and 24th of November. WAAW aims to improve the understanding of what antimicrobial medicines are and how their misuse and overuse in humans, animals and the environment are accelerating the speed at which microbes are adapting to resist their effect.

The theme for WAAW 2021 was “Spread awareness, stop resistance“ with the slogan “Antimicrobials: Handle with care.” Individuals and organisations participating in WAAW were encouraged to “Go Blue” in support of the AMR Tripartite’s (FAO, OIE and WHO) vision for tackling AMR using a One Health approach. In support of this, CPA developed a campaign which focused on the important role of pharmacists in improving the use of antimicrobials and linking it to the CwPAMS tools and resources.

What did the CPA do for WAAW 2021?

CwPAMS developed the hashtags #CPApharm and #CwPAMS for the WAAW campaign. Although the target audience was predominantly pharmacists working in the Commonwealth, communication materials were designed to be accessible to other audiences.

They also developed a website page on the CPA website. This features a toolkit, with a variety of daily activities to promote the role of pharmacists in tackling AMR. The toolkit also encouraged participants to support the One Health AMR Tripartite global campaign by using the hashtags #WAAW, #AMR #AntimicrobialResistance, #OneHealth and #HandleWithCare. Participants were also encouraged to “Go Blue to show support for pharmacists working to tackle AMR” and pass this onto colleagues.

How did people participate in the CPA's WAAW 2021 campaign?

Pick a Blue Board to support pharmacists working in AMR

Participants were encouraged to “Go Blue” for pharmacists working in AMR by sharing their favourite AMR/AMS messages on social media. There were a series of 9 blue boards that included key messages in English, and 3 for participants to insert their own messages in a relevant language to accommodate diversity across the Commonwealth.

Light up blue

Participants were invited to change their social media profile cover images, photo frames or video backgrounds to show support for pharmacists tackling AMR across the Commonwealth.

Mysterious microbes

To help “spread awareness and stop resistance”, participants shared some of the #CwPAMS “mysterious microbes” fun facts. They were also encouraged to create their own cards in any language.

#CPApharm TweetChat

A TweetChat was organised on the eve of WAAW (17th November) between 5 to 6pm GMT using the hashtag #CPApharm. The TweetChat was designed for individuals working or involved in the AMR sector, such as pharmacists, doctors, patients and policymakers, to share their views around the topic: “Spread awareness, stop resistance – the role of pharmacists”. A blog was posted about the session, which was disseminated widely in the preceding weeks.

90 people participated in the TweetChat, representing many countries including the UK, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Canada, Nigeria, South Africa, Malta, and Uganda.

Share the #CwPAMS tools and resources

Campaign participants were encouraged to share the CwPAMS programme tools and resources including the Infection Prevention Control (IPC) resources, AMS Prescribing App, AMS Toolkit, Continuing Professional Development (CPD) programmes and PULSE community platform during WAAW as part of the WAAW toolkit.

Global Antimicrobial Stewardship Game (AMS Game) tournament

To close the WAAW campaign, participants were invited to join an AMS game tournament on the 24th November as a player or facilitator. To help drive interest, a digital copy of the game was offered as a prize; 124 people across 23 countries registered to play.

The game is available to purchase here.

WAAW blogs

Various stakeholders were personally invited to write a short blog on the role of pharmacists in tackling AMR across the Commonwealth, taking a One Health approach. The CPA published 6 blogs, covering a range of AMR topics from the role of digital technology in combatting AMR, to antimicrobial stewardship.

Video recording

5 participants recorded a video documenting their views, experiences, and expertise from a One Health approach of how pharmacists play a role towards tackling AMR. The videos covered AMR in 4 countries: India, Australia, Fiji and Malaysia.

What were the results of CPA's 2021 WAAW campaign?

Overall, the CPA's campaign for WAAW was a great success. #CPApharm was in the topmost used hashtags, and @CW_Pharmacists was measured as a top influencing account in a random network of 27,042 Twitter users whose recent tweets were included in a list related to #WAAW #EAAD search terms.

A total of 1506 Tweets, 394 participants and 6,928 million impressions were measured during the month of November 2021, with most of the engagement taking place during WAAW.

CwPAMS are looking forward to building upon the strengths, and using the lessons learnt from WAAW 2021 in the 2022 campaign.


For more information on CPA's 2021 WAAW campaign, you can read their metrics report here.

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