Media centre

Strategic and Technical Advisory Group on Antimicrobial Resistance

Place: Geneva, Switzerland
Date: 19–20 September 2013

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a threat to global health security that is endangering the prevention and treatment of infections. The threat ranges from common to life-threatening and includes hospital- and community-acquired infections, tuberculosis, HIV and malaria.

Some bacterial infections in the community and hospitals are reaching a critical point in our ability to treat them; for example, community pneumonia is becoming increasingly difficult to treat. We are also rapidly running out of treatment options for gonorrhoea, returning this disease to the status of a major public health problem.

While the underlying driving concern is the impact of AMR on health and the potential for it to create an unwanted post-antibiotic era, the factors contributing to its development and the solutions for resolving it go beyond the health sector.

While significant work on AMR is underway in many countries, and progress has been made, defining and gaining wide support and endorsement for a global vision and strategy for tackling AMR is now necessary to stimulate and maximise global collaboration and actions that will roll back antimicrobial resistance as a global threat to public health.

WHO therefore, as part of its core functions, is calling together a Strategic and Technical Advisory Group (STAG) to review and help shape a global strategy to tackle the growing challenge of AMR, and to counsel WHO on the coordination role it should be playing in the fight against AMR.