‘Managing AMR in context of Public & Animal Health’

Zenex Animal Health India Pvt. Ltd. had organized an exclusive seminar on the occasion of World Antibiotic Awareness Week 2021 in association with Indian Association for Advancement of Veterinary Research (IAAVR). The webinar titled ‘Managing AMR in context of Public & Animal Health’ was held on 18th November, 2021 at a virtual platform.

Shri Atul Chaturvedi, Secretary, Animal Husbandry & Dairying, Govt. of India, had inaugurated the session as the Chief Guest. Shri Chaturvedi in his inaugural address, elaborated on the need of creating infrastructure and management system to tackle the super bugs and highlighted the activities and initiatives of DAHD to reduce the burden of AMR. New initiatives undertaken by DAHD were also highlighted as strengthening diagnostic facilities, expansion of mobile veterinary clinic, strengthening disease surveillance and digital platform for livestock farmers etc. Dr Rajesh Bhatia, Former Director- Communicable Diseases, WHO- SEA region and FAO India consultant joined the webinar as the Guest of Honour. Dr Bhatia made a brief overview of the AMR situation in India as well as global perspective and suggested for few strategic initiatives for containment of AMR.

During technical presentation, Dr Quaza Nizamuddin, President, Federation of Asian Veterinary Association (FAVA) spoke on ‘Empowering Veterinarians in Asia to fulfil their roles on the Global Action plan on AMR. Dr Bhupendra N Singh, Professor & Head, CSIR-Central Drug Research Institute made a detailed presentation on Anti-mycobacterial drug and highlights the challenges & goal of successful TB therapy and genomics for rational drug screening to overcome drug resistance. Dr Susim Ray, Head- Technical (Poultry), Zenex AH and Dr K Viswanathan, Scientist, Zydus Research Centre, demonstrated their research work on Isolation of noble probiotic strain and its development for commercial application in Indian poultry. Dr G K Sivaraman, Principal Scientist, ICAR- Central Instt. of Fishery Technology, made presentation on antibiotics use in aqua healthcare and AMR challenges & mitigation strategies.

Technical session was followed by panel discussion. During Panel discussion Dr Arun Atrey, MD & CEO-Zenex Animal Health, addressed the need of infrastructure development and diagnostic facility of animal healthcare sector as the first step towards achieving the desired objective. Dr Atrey spoke about the effective awareness program for disease prevention through vaccination & biosecurity measures as well as regulation of antibiotic sales through prescriptions. Dr Atrey had also expressed concerns on the spread of misinformation on animal healthcare practice or on animal produce which at times seriously impacts the industry and ultimately affects the livestock farmers.

Mr Vijay Teng, President –Global Animal Health, Intas pharmaceuticals, elaborated on the disease prevention & control through vaccination and biosecurity as the best possible way to minimize use of antibiotics. Another panelist Dr Vijay Makhija, President INFAH gave an overview of INFAH initiatives and activities towards ethical animal healthcare practice in sync with the regulations. Dr Makhija spoke on the need of investments in R&D for new vaccines, diagnostics, nutritional & management solutions for prudent use of drugs and containment of AMR.

Concluding the panel discussion, Dr Rishendra Verma, Emeritus scientist-ICAR opined the complexity of the AMR issue; on one hand there is a continued evolutionary process of pathogens that resulted mutations and drug resistance and on the other hand there is limited research in new drug developments. Dr Praveen Malik, Animal Husbandry commissioner, DAHD, GOI had participated in the event and suggested to submit specific recommendations discussed in the webinar with respect to National Action Plan.