The recommendations contained in the new National Plan for Combating Antibiotic Resistance (PNCAR) 2022-2025 of the Ministry of Health
Antibiotic drugs must be taken only on medical prescription, pharmaceutical companies must adapt their packaging to the appropriate indications for use, doctors must prescribe them according to basic guidelines on evidence and pharmacists must guide citizens and patients in applying the indications on the correct use and prevention of infections. These are some of the indications, a dozen in total addressed to different actors represented in an infographic, contained in the new National Antibiotic Resistance Plan (PNCAR) 2022-2025 of the Ministry of Health, which updates the previous one (2017-2021 , which remained in force due to the pandemic) and that the Regions are preparing to evaluate.
Action guidelines and objectives
The Ministry has identified several directives of action. Integrated surveillance and monitoring of antibiotic resistance, antibiotic use, healthcare related infections (Ica) and environmental monitoring. The prevention of Ica in hospitals and communities and of infectious diseases and zoonoses. Appropriate use of antibiotics in both human and veterinary fields and correct management and disposal of antibiotics and contaminated materials. However, the approach is One Health, therefore oriented towards greater integration between the human, veterinary and environmental sectors, especially in light of the experience of the Covid pandemic.
Compared to the previous Plan, a greater strengthening and extension of surveillance is envisaged, both in the hospital and in the local area, because only by knowing the dimensions of the phenomenon can it be prevented and combated.
Six are the objectives of the new PNCAR:
1) Strengthen the One Health approach, including through the development of coordinated national surveillance of antibiotic resistance and antibiotic use, and prevent the spread of antibiotic resistance in the environment.
2) Strengthen the prevention and surveillance of HAIs in the hospital and community settings.
3) Promote the appropriate use of antibiotics and reduce the frequency of infections caused by resistant microorganisms in humans and animals.
4) Promote innovation and research in the prevention, diagnosis and therapy of antibiotic-resistant infections.
5) Strengthen national cooperation and Italy’s participation in international initiatives to combat antibiotic resistance.
6) To improve the awareness of the population and to promote the training of health and environmental operators on the fight against antibiotic resistance.
Each of us can do our part, here’s how
With an invitation: “Each of us can do his part”, here are the recommendations. Pharmaceutical industries: adapt antibiotic packaging to approved indications for use and promote the search for alternatives to antimicrobials. Feed producers and pharmacists: provide dedicated feed and medicines for animals only on veterinary prescription.
Healthcare personnel in hospitalization facilities: implement good infection prevention and control practices People in institutions: ensure the existence of appropriate legislation researchers increase knowledge on the phenomenon of antibiotic resistance and develop new drugs and vaccines.
General practitioners and pediatricians: prescribe antibiotics following evidence-based guidelines.
Citizens and patients: take antibiotics only on medical prescription, strictly following the doctor’s instructions.
Veterinarians: prescribe antibiotics only if necessary based on tests where possible.
Owners and keepers of animals: always follow the instructions of the veterinarian.
Pharmacists and nurses: to guide citizens and patients in applying the indications on the correct use of antibiotics and on the prevention of infections.
Schools promote knowledge of the problem of antimicrobial resistance and methods to combat it in the school community.
Universities: provide courses and training credits dedicated to the phenomenon of antimicrobial resistance to the prudent use of antimicrobials in university programs.