Opportunities and challenges in antimicrobial resistance behavior change communication

  01 October 2020

Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) is already affecting human and animal health sectors negatively. The UN General Assembly has listed AMR among issues that need urgent address; subsequently FAO/OIE/WHO tripartite took lead and jointly developed Global Action Plan (GAP) to tackle the problem. States and Governments have developed AMR National Action Plans (NAP), Policies and Communication Strategies.

In health communication realms AMR is a distinctive and novel phenomenon. Consequently, communication theories and principles on this issue have not been tested adequately; even as literature around AMR is growing. While there are lessons that can be learned from previous and ongoing health communication campaigns targeting various audiences and coined around behavior change strategies; AMR is certainly a unique and maiden case. Kenya developed and is implementing its AMR – NAP. Kenya is among few countries that have developed and implemented an AMR Communication Strategy with the goal to create awareness and subsequently change audience behavior.

This paper presents a review of available literature, reports, Kenya experiences and theories that can be applied to AMR communications. It illustrates the gaps, opportunities and challenges and proposes strategies that can be applied at the moment as more literature on AMR communication is collected through research and documentation of country experiences.

Further reading: One Health
Author(s): Joseph O. Othieno, Obadiah Njagi, Allan Azegele
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