The Public Health Agency of Sweden
Updated 18 June 2018

Global initiatives for surveillance of antimicrobial resistance

Global surveillance is crucial to comprehend the impact of antimicrobial resistance on public health, economy and entire societies. The government of Sweden and the Public Health Agency are supporting the implementation of a global programme initiated by WHO.

WHO Collaboration for AMR Containment

In April 2016 the Unit for Antibiotics and Infection Control was designated as a WHO Collaborating Centre for Antimicrobial Resistance Containment that aims to develop the strategic direction of global AMR containment with focus on implementing surveillance. A key activity in this work is to assist WHO in launching GLASS, including leading the work of developing a manual for the early implementation. The WHO Collaborating Centre also provides technical knowledge and human capacity to accomplish the surveillance plans outlined in the Global Action Plan on AMR (GAP).

Global Action Plan for fighting resistance

Global surveillance of AMR is a cornerstone in the work to contain further spread of resistant organisms as well as gain appreciation of the complex global and multi-sectorial aspects of the problem. Still, national surveillance systems based on regional surveillance data form the basis and are crucial to inform treatment guidelines to assess the impact of interventions.

The GAP that was adopted by the WHO member states at the 2015 World Health Assembly, is an important step for the global work on fighting resistance. The Swedish government and the Public Health Agency are supporting WHO in the implementation of the GAP, with a focus on global surveillance capacity, systems and standards. In this context, the Public Health Agency hosted a high level technical meeting in 2014, where participants expressed strong commitment to developing the Global AMR Surveillance System (GLASS).

Coordination to strengthen AMR surveillance

Sweden is also an active member of the Global Health Security Agenda, an initiative for a multilateral and multi-sectorial approach to strengthen both the global capacity and nations' capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious diseases threats including nearly 50 nations, international organizations, and non-governmental stakeholders. The Public Health Agency is leading the work in the sub-group for surveillance within the AMR Action Package, one of 11 packages, all with 5-years targets. The aim of the work within the sub-group is to coordinate the collaboration and support to countries, with a focus on implementation of GLASS. There are to date 13 countries and organisations participating in the surveillance sub-group.