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The key drivers of AMR - outer context

A video explaining how AMR occurs and what factors drive the development of AMR.

In this introductory video Professor Alison Holmes summarises the key points in relation to antimicrobial resistance.

The emergence of AMR is a natural evolutionary response to antibiotic exposure. At a societal level, complex and interlinking drivers are increasing the prevalence of resistant bacteria, predominantly arising from use in humans and agriculture and the presence of antibiotics in the environment.

Before we consider how social science research can provide insights into the contextual drivers of antimicrobial resistance and help identify targeted solutions, we need to recognise that the first step is in the prevention of infection and spread of AMR by ensuring effective sanitation, vaccination, hygiene and infection prevention measures. Additionally gaining insight into the mechanisms of AMR, long-term persistence, and successful transmission, is fundamental to the development of novel targets for both diagnostic tests and therapeutic agents with integration of these into sustainable AMS strategies. Gaps in understanding and areas for innovation are clear, yet progress towards these goals is still urgently needed, with a careful awareness of any potential impact on access to effective antimicrobial treatment.

There is no single solution and multiple, synergistic, overlapping and complementing approaches will be needed, with a strong overarching shared goal to ensure and sustain access to effective antibiotic therapies. This is why social science research has a critical role in the battle to tackle AMR; it provides understanding around and has an impact on behaviours of individuals (patients, the public, or healthcare professionals), populations, and policy makers.

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Tackling Antimicrobial Resistance: A Social Science Approach

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