Antimicrobial Resistance and Use Training and Residues Surveillance Gap Analysis in Ghana
Report from the International Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Reference Centre mission to Ghana.
One of the partner countries identified by the Fleming Fund, FAO and the UK’s Chief Veterinary Officer for AMR engagement is Ghana. The UK’s International AMR Reference Centre has recently undertaken visits to Ghana establishing strong relationships with key staff from both the Veterinary Services Directorate and the Fisheries Commission.
The Reference Centre plans to undertake further visits to work with these Ghanaian partners and provide technical assistance, training and quality assurance. This joint work would seek to strengthen AMR, antimicrobial use (AMU) and residues surveillance in Ghana and build future capability.
Aims of the mission to Ghana:
- To scope out deficiencies in Ghana’s residues surveillance program by conducting a gap analysis of: laboratory capability and capacity, surveillance sampling plans and procedures.
- To train Veterinary Services Staff on improving quality of antimicrobial sales data and its subsequent analysis and the analysis of antimicrobial sales data and identifying trends using historical or retrospective data.
- To provide coaching in Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing (AST) following global guidelines including bacterial diagnostics using previously isolated aquatic bacteria and observe the collection of samples for the “Tricycle” surveillance program while assisting with follow-up tests.
- Provide advice and training to laboratories: Best choice of test method for the local conditions, method set-up, method validation, equipment procurement and installation, fit-for-purpose quality assurance and quality control systems, sample handling and traceability, sourcing of critical reagents and consumables, access to international information and knowledge networks. Covering both hands-on practical training and systems/procedures advice.
Following the coaching, the staff were able to identify a range of aquatic pathogens to the family level, they also carried out bacterial identification and were produce reproducible AST profiles. This was achieved by each of them setting up an AST from the same previously stored “Tricycle” isolate. They all produced similar results, with the zone sizes only differing by 1mm or 2mm. They were able to determine which antibiotics the isolate was susceptible or resistant to following EUCAST breakpoints.
The remains gaps in incorporating authorizations, dispensing, pharmacovigilance with Ghana’s residues surveillance programme, however, there is support to address this with further engagements and providing expertise to Ghana competent authorities.
The capabilities to perform consumption data analysis within the VSD team have been established through the training. However, before this training can be applied in practice there a need to first establish an accurate dataset. Work is currently in progress to achieve the curation of an accurate dataset with support from the Fleming Fund.