Action on antimicrobial resistance

From: Scottish Government
Published: Wed May 08 2024

Collaborative UK approach to combat infection threat.

The Scottish Government is supporting a new UK-wide joint action plan to contain and control resistance to antibiotics.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is listed among the World Health Organization's top global public health threats and arises when organisms that cause infection evolve ways to survive antibiotic treatment. It is estimated AMR directly causes over 1.2 million deaths globally, and 7,600 deaths in the UK each year - at a cost of at least £180 million annually to the NHS across the UK.

The AMR National Action Plan sets out key measures to reduce the threat of infection across human, animal, environment and food sectors. These include: optimising the use of antibiotics, investing in innovation and technology and working collaboratively with key global partners.

Through a collaborative approach across the UK, the action plan builds on the achievements and lessons learned from the first version of the plan and will run from 2024 until 2029.

Health Secretary Neil Gray said:

“The emergence of resistant infection is one of the greatest health threats of our time. Antimicrobial resistance is already causing people to suffer longer illnesses which are more difficult to treat, a position that will only worsen without collective action to contain it.

“This new national action plan will be crucial in our fight to control the threat of AMR. If we achieve the nine strategic outcomes set out in the plan we will take a major step towards our 20 year vision to contain AMR by 2040.

“The next five years represent a pivotal period in addressing this global threat and the Scottish Government will work collaboratively with all partners to combat AMR.”

Chief Veterinary Officer Scotland Sheila Voas said:

“I am delighted to see publication of the National Action Plan 2024-29, which underlines our commitment to tackle antimicrobial resistance.

“I am passionate about antimicrobial stewardship and I know that I speak for Scotland's vets and farmers when I say that responsible use of antimicrobials is paramount for animal welfare, food safety and the conservation of effective antimicrobials for the future.”


Confronting antimicrobial resistance 2024 to 2029

The National Action Plan (2019-24) was co-developed across all four nations of the UK, across departments and agencies, and in consultation with stakeholders.

Company: Scottish Government

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