LSTM has recently completed three Fleming Fund scoping studies utilising their established networks and expertise across sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. The studies were commissioned to help funding partners identify how to best strengthen surveillance capacity for the burgeoning threat posed by anti-microbial resistance (AMR).
The Fleming Fund was established in 2015 in response to the global threat of AMR. It represents a £265 million UK government investment into improving laboratory capacity for diagnosis and surveillance of AMR in low and middle income countries (LMIC) where AMR has a disproportionate impact. Laboratory capacity is critical in providing information on the scale and distribution of resistance to antimicorobials in pathogens of medical and vetenary importance. Last June, following a competitive process, LSTM’s Capacity Research Unit (CRU) was commissioned to conduct three baseline studies that would feed into future Fleming Fund work to further evaluate and improve countries’ laboratory and AMR surveillance capacity.
The first of the studies was an analysis of approaches to laboratory capacity strengthening in LMICs to provide evidence for the design of future interventions. Building on this analysis the second study assessed AMR surveillance models and supporting laboraotry capcity in Ghana, Nigeria and Nepal in order to provide representative case studies on AMR surveillance systems in LMICs. The third study looked at regional networks and educations resources for AMR in low and middle income countries and identified and described available networks and resources that could support the effective implementation of such networks.
Russell Dacombe, from LSTM’s CRU led the work. He said: “Anti-microbial resistance is a significant threat to global health and one of the key issues to addresing this threat is to develop effective capacity, in many low income countries to carry out effective surveillance. This requires strong laboratory systems that are critical in providing the data counties and the international community need to make evidence based decisions for developing effective AMR strategies. The CRU was in the perfect position to carry out these studies to inform future strategy to stregthen AMR surveilance because of our long history of working to strengthen laboratory capacity in low and middle income countries. The CRU and LSTM will continue to work alongside in-country partners across sub-Saharan Africa and Asia to address the big issues affecting health in the region including combating anti-microbial resistance.”
You can read more about the studies here.