The Economist Events’ Antimicrobial Resistance Summit

Start Date : March 26, 2019
End Date : March 26, 2019
Time : 9:00 am to6:00 pm

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BMA House Conference and Events Venue, Tavistock Square, Bloomsbury, London, WC1H 9JP, United Kingdom


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The world is facing an imminent crisis of antimicrobial resistance (AMR). A growing range of disease-causing bacteria are proving difficult to treat; some are no longer treatable, even with the last line of antibiotic defences. In a classic case of market failure, ageing antibiotics that are increasingly less effective are not being replaced by new ones. Meanwhile, resistance is accelerating through the misuse and abuse of antibiotics—in humans, animals and the environment. The cost of inaction is great. The risk of returning to a pre-antibiotic era, as resistant infections become more common and more life-threatening, is very real.

Many working in the field of AMR fear this global call to action is dissipating and falling well short of its aims. Political will is fading. The challenges are multidimensional. Poor awareness among the public, policymakers and even health professionals remains a major obstacle to reducing unnecessary use of antibiotics and changing behaviours. There is a lack of broad-based and effective advocacy. The pipeline for new antibiotics is worryingly narrow, and progress in finding incentives to nudge pharmaceutical companies back to developing new drugs has stalled; some firms have even withdrawn from the field. A widespread lack of data on the scale and human and economic impacts of AMR hinders effective responses.

Such challenges demand wide-reaching policy interventions, coordinated local and global responses, changes in market dynamics and incentives, and significant shifts in behaviour. The Antimicrobial Resistance Summit asks why the global call to action on such a critical public good is now sputtering, and how renewed energy and momentum might be unlocked in the global fight against AMR.


Speakers: Marc Sprenger, director, antimicrobial resistance secretariat, World Health Organisation, Jayasree K. Iyer, executive director, Access to Medicine Foundation, David Heymann, head, centre for global health security, Chatham House, Jean Patel, science team lead, antibiotic resistance co-ordination and strategy, CDC, Martin Seychell, deputy director-general, Directorate-General for Health and Food Safety, European Commission

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Event Categories: Health & Nutrition.

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