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Commenting on the publication of the Government’s response to Lord Jim O’Neill’s independent review on antimicrobial resistance, BIVDA’s Chief Executive Doris-Ann Williams MBE said:

“Increasing the adoption of in vitro diagnostics (IVDs) is essential in order to tackle antimicrobial resistance (AMR) effectively.

“Greater uptake of IVDs would lead to a reduction in cases of unnecessary antibiotic prescribing or a more targeted use of therapy against infection where identified by a test.

“Therefore, we were pleased to see a focus on increasing the development and uptake of rapid diagnostics in the Government’s response to the O’Neill Review. Urgent action is required to halt AMR and the acknowledgement that the promotion of point of care diagnostics needs to be accelerated is welcome.

“However, the report largely concentrates on the development of new diagnostics. While this is a vital focus, we should not ignore existing diagnostics that, if adopted more widely, could make a vital difference now. Therefore, we strongly urge healthcare professionals in the UK to make use of the quick, accurate and effective IVDs already available to them.

“We were also disappointed to read that the Government’s top priority is to establish a global approach to funding new antimicrobials. Developing new antimicrobials is important but it must be remembered that it is only one, temporary solution. Unless we change our approach to their use, new antimicrobials will also become ineffective over time, reinforcing the current status quo.

“Long-term, it is imperative that prescriptions are informed by a diagnostic test, where possible, as recommended by the O’Neill Review. IVDs also need to be given the same priority as antimicrobials in the fight against AMR.

“Over the coming months, we will continue to work with the Government to implement the recommendations and tackle the threat of AMR to human health.”

Notes to Editor:

BIVDA is the industry association for manufacturers and suppliers of IVD tests. We represent over 150 members, ranging from British start-up companies to UK subsidiaries of multinational corporations. BIVDA member companies employ more than 8,000 people in the UK, with a total industry turnover of approximately £900 million.

For further information, please contact External Affairs Manager Emma Thomas at emma@bivda.co.uk or 0845 6188224. 

For further information on the Government’s response, please click here.

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