World Bank releases report on antimicrobial resistance

19 November 2019

In early October, the World Bank Group released a report on antimicrobial resistance. By looking at several country-based case studies, along with the growing literature on AMR, this report outlines factors both helping and burdening interventions towards controlling AMR, especially in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Specifically, the report outlines three main action areas in controlling AMR:

  • using economic incentives, combined with increased awareness, to limit the use of antibiotics;
  • ensuring AMR is a priority in global policymakers’ agendas while maintaining surveillance and monitoring systems; and
  • increasing access to better hygiene, vaccination, and livestock husbandry to fundamentally reduce the need for antibiotics.

With LMICs set to bear the largest burden of AMR, the report also highlights the need to close the implementation gap between proposed technical solutions and the actual implementation of these solutions in LMICs. Along these lines, this report touches upon how the role of antimicrobials has influenced health and healthcare practices over a wide variety of regions, stages of development, governance structures, and infrastructures. The report publishes two key findings:

  • antimicrobial resistance must be reframed as a global development problem — one that cannot be solved through technical solutions alone; and
  • AMR-sensitive interventions in country-specific contexts are often the most cost-effective method of overcoming underlying barriers to establish an intervention-conducive environment.

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