In observance of World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (WAAW), which is from November 18-24, Collective Prevention Services (CPS) in collaboration with a number of stakeholders are inviting the public to mark their calendar to attend a public health discussion event at the University of St. Martin (USM) on Thursday, November 24, Room 202 at 7:00 PM.
You will be able to learn more about Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR), and why it’s a global concern and what impact it could have on Sint Maarten.
An estimated 1.3 million people around the world die each year directly due to bacterial antimicrobial resistance.
AMR occurs when bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites change over time and no longer respond to medicines, making infections harder to treat and increasing the risk of disease spread, severe illness and death.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), if no action is taken, that number could soar dramatically, bringing higher public health costs and pushing more people into poverty, especially in low-income countries.
Antibiotics and other antimicrobials play a key role in the success of modern medicine and have greatly improved the health of humans and animals. But overuse and misuse has reduced their efficacy, with more pathogens developing the ability to survive the antimicrobials designed to eliminate them, the WHO points out.
The opening remarks at the public health discussion event will be made by the Minister of Public Health, Social Development and Labor (Ministry VSA) Hon. Omar Ottley. The USM moderator will be Lysanne Charles.
Guest speakers for the evening will be Dr. Kalkidan Bekele, General Practitioner; Dr. Wandokayi Matowe, Pharmacologist; Sabine Vollenbroek, local Pharmacist; and Nkosazana Illis, Social Worker & Artist.
The stakeholders involved in creating awareness about AMR are: USM, PAS (Pharmacy Association of Sint Maarten), the Sint Maarten Medical Center (SMMC), and the American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine (AUC).
This year, the theme of WAAW is “Preventing Antimicrobial Resistance Together.” The WHO calls on all sectors to encourage the prudent use of antimicrobials and to strengthen preventive measures addressing AMR, working together collaboratively through a One Health approach.
For additional information about the AMR public discussion event, you can call CPS at 542-1222 or 914.