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National Action Plan for Antimicrobial Resistance set to be finalized this week

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04th October, 2017 The Minister for Health, Hon Dr. Saia Ma’u Piukala opened a three-day workshop this morning at Tano’a International Dateline Hotel, hosted by the Ministry of Health and funded by the World Health Organization (WHO).

The three-day event aimed to discuss and finalize National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance for Tonga, which declares total inter-sectoral commitment to act and fight against antimicrobial resistance.

Dr. Piukala stated that antimicrobial resistance is a global public health threat with resistant microorganisms reaching alarming levels in many countries, including Tonga.

“Lately, frequent infectious disease outbreaks has occurred in our country, with some pathogens showing multi-drug resistance. In 2011, the WHO celebrated World Health Day highlighting antimicrobial resistance with the important theme ‘No Action Today, No Cure Tomorrow’”.

He told the gathering that if Tonga does not act now, antimicrobial resistance can endanger all efforts to control bacterial infections.

The Ministry of Health is working to maintain quality of care provided to patient by reducing the incidence of disease outbreak and multi-drug resistance.

He also stated, “Our effort alone is not adequate to address this problem; we need the support from other government ministries and partners. Therefore, we need your commitment and collaboration in implementing this action plan. Everyone plays critical roles in avoiding the further emergence of antimicrobial resistance.”

Dr. Piukala also expressed his sincere gratitude to the World Health Organization (WHO) for their financial assistance and continuous support.

WHO Technical Officer to Tonga, Dr. Yutaro Setoya said the situational analysis on AMR in Tonga highlighted the emergence of some microorganisms’ resistance to conventional antibiotics in the country. If not controlled, this may threaten the effective prevention and treatment of an increasing range of infections.

WHO commended the effort in finalizing Tonga National Plan on AMR. The plan will guide actions and outline clear roles and responsibilities of each stakeholder. The importance of establishing indicators is to monitor and evaluate the country’s response to AMR.

Attending the opening sessions were Government CEO’s, representatives from line ministries, stakeholders and private sectors and guests.

ENDS

Issued by the: Ministry of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change & Communications.

 

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