Antimicrobial use in animals: a journey towards integrated surveillance


M. Jeannin, M. Magongo, D. Gochez, O. Valsson, E. Erlacher-Vindel, M. Arroyo Kuribreña & J. Yugueros-Marcos

In 2015, the World Organisation for Animal Health (WOAH, founded as OIE) initiated the collection of data on the antimicrobial use (AMU) intended for use in animals, using a Microsoft Excel questionnaire. In 2022, WOAH is migrating to a customised interactive online system: ANIMUSE Global Database. This will enable national Veterinary Services to not only monitor and report data more easily and more accurately, but to also visualise, analyse and use data for surveillance purposes, to their own benefit in the implementation of National Action Plans (NAPs) on antimicrobial resistance (AMR). This journey started seven years ago, with progressive improvements on the way data are collected, analysed and reported. A journey plenty of continuous adaptations to overcome different challenges encountered (i.e. data confidentiality, training of civil servants, calculation of active ingredients, standardisation to enable fair comparisons and trend analyses, data interoperability, etc.). Technical developments have been key in the success of this endeavour. However, we must not underestimate the importance of the human element: listen to our Members, to their needs, exchange to solve issues, to adapt tool, to gain and maintain trust. The journey is not over yet, and more evolutions are foreseen, such as: complement current data sources with data collected directly at the farm level, strengthen interoperability and integrated analysis with cross-sectoral databases, facilitate institutionalisation of data collection, and systematic use in monitoring, evaluation, lesson learning reporting and eventually, surveillance of AMU/AMR when implementing and updating NAPs. This paper describes how all these different challenges were overcome and how those foreseen in the future will be addressed.

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