Addressing Antibiotic use: insights from social science around the world
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a major threat to global health and economies, the harmful effects of which are disproportionately experienced by those living in Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs). Tackling this complex problem requires multidisciplinary and multisectoral responses. In the last few years, there has been a growing acknowledgement of the vital role of social science in understanding and intervening on antibiotic use, a key driver of AMR. Existing reviews summarise evidence of specific aspects of antibiotic use and specific intervention types. The growing concern that our off-the-shelf toolkit for addressing antibiotic use is insufficient in the face of rising use across humans, animals and plants, requires that we take a fresh look at the ways we are understanding this problem and possibilities for solutions. The ambition of this report is to provide a timely intervention into this global debate, by formulating a conceptual map of the insights from the growing body of social science research on addressing antibiotic use conducted in a diverse range of economic, social, and health system settings around the world.
A series of panel presentations and discussions was held in 2020 with leading social scientists working on antibiotic use in different settings. Analysis of the proceedings of these panels, together with a literature
review which snowballed from the work of the 76 researchers profiled through the antimicrobialsinsociety.org community of practice, led to a grouping of the key points of entry for recommendations to act on
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