Under the theme “United to Preserve Antimicrobials”, FV’s event to mark World Antimicrobial Awareness Week 2020 was held in the Lobby, F Building from 23rd to 27th of November. Attracting many visitors with its interesting activities and useful information about antimicrobial resistance, the event was a great success in spreading its important message.
At the opening ceremony, a representative of the organisers, Mr Mohd Fazli Shuib, Head of the Pharmacy Department, emphasised the goal of the week was “to create and raise awareness to FV staff”, as well as to the general public about the appropriate use of antimicrobials. In addition, throughout the event, the hospital also wished to warn about the emergence of the increasing trend of antimicrobial resistance that is the result of inappropriate antimicrobial use.
Activities, including darts games, and quick Q&A sessions, aimed to provide a basic understanding of antimicrobial resistance, were enthusiastically attended by everyone. Ms Tran Ngoc Thanh Huyen, Intern from the Pharmacy Department, shared “I think the activities at the event are very practical and meaningful. I gained more knowledge and then shared this information to my friends. Also, people from outside the pharmaceutical field paid more attention in the use of antimicrobials”. Participants in the photo contest on Facebook also said that they too have helped share the information to many friends so they understand the issues surrounding antimicrobial resistance.
An important part of the event was the sharing sessions by both doctors working at FV and guests. Topics revolved around the current use of antimicrobials in Vietnam, as well as the use of antimicrobials in the treatment of a number of diseases such as otolaryngology and pneumonia etc. According to the doctor’s sharing sessions, the current situation of antimicrobial resistance is becoming more difficult to control. Asian countries tend to have a larger impact on antimicrobial resistance than other regions, with Vietnam belonging to the “serious” group. In recent years, countries have begun to focus on developing new antimicrobials, the growth rate is still slow with only 1-2 products per year being developed.
In an effort to tackle antimicrobial resistance, FV Hospital has established the Antibiotic Stewardship Sub-Committee and implemented the Antibiotic Stewardship Programme to ensure the appropriateness of antimicrobial use. Mr Mohd Fazli Shuib said, “Antimicrobials at FV will be systematically monitored to curb inappropriate use, for example the continued use of antimicrobials when they are no longer necessary, use of broad-spectrum antimicrobials when it is not required, continued use of broad-spectrum antimicrobials unnecessarily when sensitivity results are received, use of the wrong antimicrobials, or the prescribing of the wrong dose”. Mr Fazli added that through the hospital’s multidisciplinary Antibiotic Stewardship Committee, FV has been actively and progressively implementing interventions as specified in the Antibiotic Stewardship Programme. In the view of the positive engagement of pharmacists, coupled with the strong support from the Medical Director’s office, the programme is effective in ensuring appropriate use of restricted (broad spectrum) antimicrobials.
The World Antimicrobial Awareness Week 2020 has officially come to an end, but the battle to protect antimicrobials is still on-going in Vietnam and around the world. Having the knowledge about antimicrobials, using drugs according to medical prescriptions, and advising people about the current state of resistance is not only for our benefit but is also our responsibility.