The GTA Foundation, with support from the Henry Ford Health System (HFHS) Global Health Initiative, (Detroit, Michigan, USA) conducted a two-day workshop regarding integrated activities and tools, including training surrounding the World Health Organization’s (WHO) toolkit for antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) in low- and middle-income countries.
The workshop was organized in collaboration with the Quality, Standard and Regulation Division, Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP). It was planned in conjunction with the WHO’s Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Awareness Week to ensure effective antibiotic treatment for patients today & tomorrow.
AMR is of major global public health importance with major threats to underdeveloped countries like Nepal. It may kill more people than other diseases if not contained. In accordance with the workshop’s goals and aims, healthcare professionals were trained, in addition to policy level-advocacy regarding the awareness and rational use of antibiotics.
A total of 10 participant physicians were invited from five different hospitals categorizing governmental, non-governmental organizations and community/university-run hospitals. The participants will utilize training from the workshop to perform the role of AMR champions to implement and advocate for stewardship programs at their hospitals.
The WHO AMS toolkit is a comprehensive package for implementing AMS programs at hospitals in low- and middle-income countries. The toolkit includes focused leadership to physicians, nurses, microbiologists, pharmacists and housekeeping staff. A feasibility study looking at the implementation and integration of toolkits in healthcare settings was undertaken in Nepal and three other countries and was led by GTA and HFHS staff.
Dr. Madan K. Upadhayaya, Chief of Quality, Standard and Regulation Division of MoHP had started the session by welcoming Dr. Marcus Zervos, Dr. Anita B. Shallal, and Tyler Prentiss from HFHS, in addition to the GTA facilitation team. His talk emphasized the importance of antimicrobial stewardship initiatives and highlighted that administrators at the MoHP have prioritized immediate actions in the field of antimicrobial resistance, including finalization of a national action plan throughout Nepal.
National experts Dr. Rajesh Dhoj Joshi, Hospital Director and Dr. Basudha Shrestha, Senior Consultant Microbiologists at Kathmandu Model Hospital highlighted the national AMR context and antimicrobial guidelines. Mr. Pan Bahadur Kshetry, Senior Drug Administrator, MoHP explained the Nepalese policy, plan and programs for AMR and AMS and the need for infection prevention and control programs. Marcus Zervos is the Division Head of Infectious Diseases at Henry Ford Health System, Assistant Dean at Wayne State University, and a global leader on infectious disease. Dr. Anita B. Shallal, MD, Infectious Diseases Fellow and Tyler Prentiss, Senior Program Manager at HFHS facilitated the sessions.