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ICMR, Pfizer to work on antimicrobial resistance

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The ‘Centre to Combat Antimicrobial Resistance’ in New Delhi will be set up

The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Pfizer has announced that they will set up a centre to address the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance in India. The ‘Centre to Combat Antimicrobial Resistance’ in New Delhi will be set up as a part of memorandum of understanding signed recently, they added.

The joint initiative will implement comprehensive interventions, ranging from antimicrobial resistance (AMR) stewardship programmes for nursing homes to scaling up of the ongoing AMR surveillance network and creating awareness around responsible use of antibiotics, the joint statement said.

Pfizer has provided an initial grant of Rs 6.97 crore for this initiative with a provision to scale up further as the program expands, it added.

“The Government of India recognises the need for urgent action and hence is developing a national response mechanism to adeptly deal with the growing challenge of anti-microbial resistance,” Department of Health Research Secretary & ICMR Director General K VijayRaghavan said.

Adopting a partnership approach with Pfizer, ICMR is engaging with relevant stakeholders to draw in diverse perspectives and support, he added.

Commenting on the development, Pfizer Ltd MD S Sridhar says, “The pharmaceuticals industry must respond in full force to support the Government’s ambitious plan to combat antimicrobial resistance.”

“Pfizer recognises the serious public health threat associated with anti-microbial resistance and we work closely with the governments and public health community to address the crisis of drug resistant infection,” Regional President of APAC Pfizer Essential Health, Pierre Gaudreault said.

The Government of India views AMR as a key priority and in April 2017 finalised country’s National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance (NAP-AMR), the statement said.

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