Antimicrobial Resistance and Faith-based Engagement: A Workshop to Develop Faith-based Organization Action Plans

April 7- 8, 2019
Location: Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a deep and global crisis. It is a particular challenge for less resourced and lower-income countries which may paradoxically both lack sufficient access to high-quality needed medicines and yet overuse them. Reasons include lack of access to diagnostics and the ability to obtain antibiotics, often of uncertain quality, outside usual health care settings. These challenges are further compounded by widespread use of antibiotics in food production and challenges in preventing spread of organisms in both health care and community environments. All these factors contribute to the selection and spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in precisely the areas least equipped to prevent, detect, and respond to outbreaks.

In many areas, a significant amount of health care delivery, as well as education of providers and patients, is provided through faith-linked organizations and religious groups. As a result, faith institutions can be important partners and implementers in raising awareness and developing and adopting best practices both within their own organizations and in support of broader nationwide efforts. This workshop, which took place at Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome from April 7 to 8, 2019, brought together experts and faith-based health care providers to discuss ways both to stimulate further awareness of the growing problem of AMR and to promote concrete action. This was a follow-on event to a December 2016 workshop organized by the Department of State, Caritas Internationalis, and Georgetown University, which resulted in a report that included a call to action on strengthening faith-based engagement on the issue of AMR. The call to action served as the basis of discussion in the 2019 workshop.

This event was co-sponsored by the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs and the Georgetown University Global Health Initiative. It was made possible through the support of the GHR Foundation.

Schedule

April 7

1:30-2:40 p.m. | Welcome and Introductions
Katherine Marshall, Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University; World Faiths Development Dialogue

2:30-3:15 p.m. | AMR Overview: What is AMR, how do we address it, and where do faith actors and institutions fit in?
Chair: Katherine Marshall, Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University; World Faiths Development Dialogue
Jessica Petrillo, Office of International Health and Biodefense at U.S. Department of State
Jesse Goodman, Center on Medical Product Access, Safety and Stewardship (COMPASS) at Georgetown University

3:15-4:15 p.m. | Break

4:15 p.m.-5:30 p.m. | Update on Global Progress: Actions by Global Health Organizations, Networks, and Civil Society
Chair: John Monahan, Advisor for Global Health at Georgetown University
Ernesto Jaramillo, Global TB Programme of the World Health Organization, Geneva
Mirfin Mpundu, ReAct Africa; Ecumenical Pharmaceutical Network
Tonny Tumwesigye, Ugandan Protestant Medical Bureau; Africa Christian Health Associations Platform
Leonardo Palombi, Department of Biomedicine and Prevention, University of Rome Tor Vergata; Community of Sant’Egidio

5:30 p.m. | Closing
John Monahan, Advisor for Global Health at Georgetown University

6:30 p.m. | Dinner

April 8

9:00-9:40 a.m. | Overview of Call to Action and Update on On-the-ground Developments
Chair: Jessica Petrillo, Office of International Health and Biodefense at U.S. Department of State
Sr. Barbara Brillant, F.M.M., National Catholic Health Council; Mother Patern College of Health Sciences in Monrovia, Liberia
Dianne François, Catholic Medical Mission Board Program, Haiti
Jonathan Trapp, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America; Centers for Disease Control

9:40-10:00 a.m. | Identifying Priority Areas for Intervention – Framing Our Breakout Sessions
Deus Bazira, Center for Global Health Practice at Georgetown University Medical Center

10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. | Breakout Sessions: Collaborative brainstorming on concepts of intervention, common challenges, best practices

12:00-1:30 p.m. | Lunch

1:30-2:45 p.m. | Plenary Session on Common Priorities, Challenges, Best Practices
Chair: Katherine Marshall, Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University; World Faiths Development Dialogue

2:45 p.m. | Closing Remarks
Chair: John Monahan, Advisor for Global Health at Georgetown University

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Related Publication

White Paper June 1, 2019

Antimicrobial Resistance and Faith-inspired Engagement

The WHO's 2015 Global Action Plan contained no reference to faith-inspired groups' potential role in combating antimicrobial resistance. This is a critical oversight, as increased partnerships and coordination between FIOs and other organizations can lead to improved and more comprehensive efforts.