Concerned about the rising levels of drug resistance whereby microbes evolve to become immune to a known drugs, the UK Prime Minister asked economist Jim O’Neill to analyse this global problem of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and propose concrete actions to tackle it internationally. In July 2014, the UK Government commissioned the Review on Antimicrobial Resistance in collaboration with the Wellcome Trust. The Review is independent and engages widely with international stakeholders to understand and propose solutions to the problem of antimicrobial resistance, from an economic and social perspective. In May 2015, Jim O’Neill, who is widely known for coining the term BRICs for the emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China, was appointed to the House of Lords and became Commercial Secretary to Her Majesty’s Treasury in the UK. He continues to chair the Review on Antimicrobial Resistance in a personal capacity.
This report outlines the Review’s final recommendations. It first discusses the mounting problem of resistance and why action is needed to combat it and then provides an overview of the solutions that the Review thinks should be implemented to curtail unnecessary use and increase the supply of new antimicrobials. It then looks at the role of public awareness campaigns, the need to improve sanitation and hygiene, reduce pollution from agriculture and the environment, improve global surveillance, introduce rapid diagnostics and vaccines, the need to increase the number of people in this area, and use of market entry rewards and an innovation fund to generate more drugs. Finally the paper examines how these solutions can be funded and looks at ways to build political consensus around them.