Objective 5: Integrated surveillance and response to resistance and usage
Objective Five of the National Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Strategy – 2020 and Beyond aims to:
- enhance our capacity to collect, analyse and report on AMR and the use of antimicrobials in Australia
- provide data on resistant organisms, and the illnesses caused by them, to understand their magnitude, distribution and impact
- inform local, national, regional and global action that needs to take place and evaluate our response to AMR.
Why is this important?
Surveillance collects, analyses and reports data on key organisms that are resistant to antibiotics and on the use of antibiotics. Surveillance improves how we can respond to the threat of AMR by detecting:
- emerging resistance and trends
- links between antibiotic use and resistance
- where we need to act.
View the full details of Objective Five of the National Antimicrobial Resistance Strategy –2020 and Beyond, including specific priority areas of action.
What are we doing?
For human health
Australia has a national system for AMR and antibiotic usage surveillance in human health. The system is called the AURA Surveillance System. It collects and reports on data from hospitals, aged care facilities and the community.
The report builds on AURA 2019 and provides a comprehensive picture of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), antimicrobial use and the appropriateness of antimicrobial prescribing in Australia, in hospitals, aged care, general practice and the community.
Four key surveillance programs contribute to AURA:
- the Australian Group on Antimicrobial Resistance
- the National Antimicrobial Utilisation Surveillance Program
- the National Antimicrobial Prescribing Survey
- Queensland Health’s OrgTrx.
AURA also includes the National Alert System for Critical Antimicrobial Resistances (CARAlert). It collects and reports data on critical organisms that are resistant to last-line antimicrobials.
The National Centre for Antimicrobial Stewardship manages the National Antimicrobial Prescribing Survey (NAPS). The survey:
- audits antimicrobial prescribing patterns and identifies where changes can be made to improve prescribing in human health
- collects data from hospitals and residential aged care settings
- has piloted NAPS in general practice.
Australia is establishing a national One Health Surveillance System as part of our Budget 20–21 initiatives.
For animal health
An Australian research report analyses antimicrobial surveillance actions in the animal and agriculture sector in Australia and other countries.
The Australian Government has:
- carried out a Pilot Surveillance Program for Antimicrobial Resistance in Bacteria of Animal Origin
- funded the monitoring of the rate of resistance in bacteria from food-producing animals.
Australian researchers are measuring the levels of AMR in other livestock, companion animal and wildlife species.
- Wildlife Health Australia manages wildlife surveillance programs.
- The National Wildlife Health Information System database captures data on AMR in free-ranging wildlife.
The 2014 report Quantity of Antimicrobial Products Sold for Veterinary Use in Australia provides data on antimicrobial product sales for veterinary use in Australia between 2005 and 2010.
The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), in line with the Global Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance, has developed a global database on antimicrobials intended for animal use. Since 2015, Australia has provided data to this platform through the OIE's annual survey.
Share your activity or research project that supports Objective Five of the National AMR Strategy – 2020 and Beyond.