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AMR Debate in Parliament following BIVDA Briefing

By April 23, 2024No Comments

Last week, former Health Minister Will Quince led a Westminster Hall debate on antimicrobial resistance. In the preceding weeks, Mr Quince asked BIVDA for a briefing, which helped inform his contributions. Notably, he called for ‘greater investment in diagnostics, monitoring and screening—particularly in relation to rapid point-of-care testing—at local system level’.

This intervention directly correlates with BIVDA’s AMR consensus statement, which called for action to support adoption of existing rapid diagnostic technology – specifically C-Reactive Protein (CRP) point of care testing (POCT).

Jim Shannon MP and Head of the Science and Technology Committee, Greg Clark MP, also made thoughtful comments related to diagnostics. Mr Shannon called for antibiotics to be prescribed only after a thorough examination which determines that they are absolutely necessary. Mr Clark directly questioned the representative health minister, Maria Caulfield, on the Netherlands’ effective use of POCT to blunt AMR since 2011, and asked whether the UK had any plans to mirror the Dutch initiative.

The Minister pledged to follow-up on this and agreed that more could be done in this area and also agreed to write to Mr Clark on how this type of testing can be rolled-out nationally. BIVDA has written to the Minister to offer our support to facilitate any roll-out plans, assist with the delivery of the upcoming AMR action plan, and meet to discuss both issues.

Ben Kemp