About Antibiotic Resistance and One Health Antibiotic Stewardship
Antibiotic resistance and its effect on
humans, animals, and the environment
Antibiotics are powerful tools for fighting and preventing infections. However, widespread use of antibiotics has resulted in an alarming increase in antibiotic-resistant infections. Antibiotic resistance occurs when bacteria change in a way that reduces the effectiveness of drugs designed to cure or prevent infections. As antibiotic-resistant infections increase, therapeutic options for the treatment of bacterial infections are becoming increasingly limited, expensive and often more toxic. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has estimated that antibiotic-resistance bacteria causes 2 million illnesses in people and 23,000 deaths each year.
Antibiotic resistance also affects the health of animals. The National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System monitors antimicrobial resistance among bacteria isolated from food animals (i.e. chicken, turkey, swine, and cattle) as well as humans and retail meats. In 2013, approximately 29% of turkey, 18% of swine, 17% of beef, and 9% of chicken non-typhoidal Salmonella isolates were multi-drug resistant (i.e. resistant to 3 or more classes of antimicrobials). Multi-drug resistant Salmonella and other pathogens of human importance, such as MRSA and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus, have also been isolated from companion animals.
Antibiotics, antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and antibiotic resistance genes have been detected in the natural environment of Minnesota and around the world. The U.S. Geological Survey and Minnesota Pollution Control Agency measured organic chemicals in groundwater underlying urbanized areas in Minnesota and found that the antibiotic sulfamethoxazole was the most frequently detected contaminant. Questions have been raised about the environmental fate of antibiotics, the effect of antibiotics on the natural microbial community, and the impact of environmental antibiotics, resistant bacteria, and resistance genes on human health and the overall problem of antibiotic resistance.
One Health Minnesota Antibiotic Stewardship Collaborative
In 2015, the US government released the National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria to prevent the development and spread of resistant infections, increase surveillance efforts, develop new drugs and diagnostic tests, and promote international collaboration to prevent and control antibiotic resistance. In Minnesota, stakeholders recognized the need to come together and discuss a coordinated way forward to combat antibiotic resistance and promote antibiotic stewardship. With a One Health approach, stakeholders acknowledged that the health of humans, animals, and the environment is interconnected, and that stewardship must be a collaborative effort among multiple disciplines. One Health-driven engagement will facilitate more holistic communication among Minnesota’s public and professionals and encourage identification of antibiotic stewardship best practices across settings.
- Provide a collaborative environment to promote judicious antibiotic use and stewardship and to reduce the impact of antibiotic-resistant pathogens of human, animal, and environmental health importance
- Minnesota leaders in human, animal, and environment health will work together to raise awareness and change behaviors to preserve antibiotics and treat infections effectively
- To promote understanding of One Health antibiotic stewardship across disciplines
- To improve human antibiotic stewardship efforts
- To improve animal antibiotic stewardship efforts
- To develop the “antibiotic footprint” concept as a way to communicate the impact of antibiotic use on the environment
Workgroup member affiliations
Abbott Northwestern Hospital
Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota
Emergency Physicians Professional Association- Minnesota
Hennepin County Medical Center
Leading Age Minnesota
Merck Research Labs
Minnesota Beef Council
Minnesota Board of Animal Health
Minnesota Board of Dentistry
Minnesota Board of Veterinary Medicine
Minnesota Department of Agriculture
Minnesota Department of Health
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
Minnesota Hospital Association
Minnesota Milk Producers Association
Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
Minnesota Pork Board
Minnesota State Cattlemen’s Association
Minnesota Turkey Growers Association
One Water, One Health, LLC.
Pipestone Veterinary Services
St. Paul Infectious Disease Associates, Ltd.
University of Minnesota
University of St. Thomas
US Geographical Survey
Zoetis Animal Health