20 July 2023

RCPath’s international work on diagnostics held up as an example of good practice by the All Party Parliamentary Group for Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is one of the most pressing health threats facing the world. An estimated 1.2 million people died in 2019 from antibiotic resistance bacterial infections and by 2050.The O'Neill report on antimicrobial resistance estimates that up to 10 million deaths could be caused by AMR.

Given this, as part of British Science Week 2023, Malaria No More UK and the APPG for Malaria & Neglected Tropical Diseases hosted the ‘Race against resistance’ roundtable to discuss resistance to drugs and insecticides and College Vice-President for Learning, Professor Angharad Davies, attended to give the perspective from the College.

Effective diagnostic tools are crucial to understanding resistance patterns and the College’s international work in this area has been highlighted by the APPG as an example of good practice.

1. The Lancet, Global burden of bacterial antimicrobial resistance in 2019: a systematic analysis, 22 January 2022.

College evidence featured in the APPG report 

‘The Royal College of Pathologists (RCPath) engages internationally on global health issues, with nearly a quarter of its members outside the UK. To address a chronic lack of investment in clinical diagnostics and global lab training, RCPath’s Lab Skills Africa project aimed to improve patient management, in particular raising diagnostic testing for TB, malaria and HIV.

The project delivered 1.7 million tests annually, working with counterparts across endemic countries.

The College have also worked on educational work on AMR with the National Postgraduate Medical College of Nigeria. Surveillance systems and microbiology capacity are lacking across many endemic countries, and AMR national action plans, including in Nigeria, have been hampered by a lack of funding. Delivered alongside in-country partners, this programme delivers training on AMR for healthcare professionals.’

APPG for Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases Race Against Resistance report