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One-Health Antimicrobial Workshop Review

The Alberta Veterinary Medical Association hosted the Alberta One‐Health Antimicrobial Workshop with support provided by a grant from the Government of Alberta. The workshop was developed in collaboration with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry and Alberta Health. In order to keep to the one‐health theme, ensuring representation from both the human/public health and the veterinary/animal health areas of interest, a diverse steering committee was selected to develop the concept and the program.   

The Alberta One‐Health Antimicrobial Workshop was developed in response to the ever‐increasing concern regarding continued threats to health caused by antimicrobial resistance. The workshop objective was to facilitate collaborative discussion and to identify issues and challenges faced by various stakeholders as they are confronted with the task of reviewing, refining and reducing their current use of antimicrobials of all types. Workshop participation was by invitation and the invitee list was expanded to include any organization whose members prescribe, distribute, use or influence the use of antimicrobial products – in human or animal health. Each organization was asked to nominate key representatives who are knowledgeable on the subject and who could potentially influence future policy. While the event was an Alberta initiative, it also engaged representatives from other provinces and from the federal government and agencies.  

The workshop considered four major thematic areas, in alignment with The Federal Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance in Canada.

  • Surveillance: Detecting and monitoring trends and threats in order to inform strategies to reduce the risk and impacts of resistance by collecting information on both the use of antimicrobials and resistance to them.
  • Stewardship: Supporting policies and strategies that ensure optimal use of antimicrobials once a legitimate decision to use them has been made.  
  • Infection Prevention and Control: Recognizing that the best way to preserve the effectiveness of current treatments is to not require treatment in the first place, how can best practices aimed at disease prevention and control be expanded or improved?  
  • Research and Innovation: Identifying opportunities for development of new products, technologies, practices and policies to mitigate the development of resistance.  

Each program segment was introduced by recognized and highly knowledgeable speakers, who set the stage for in‐depth discussion in small group breakout sessions. The breakout rooms were populated by a selected demographic mix of individuals from both the human and the animal health side of the issue. As the workshop attendance was in excess of 150 delegates who are experts in their field, it is safe to say that the examination of issues was extensive, if not exhaustive. We want to thank all of the speakers and attendees for their enthusiastic participation.

This article will be updated as more information from the workshop is made availavble.