ECDC, EFSA and EMA Joint Scientific Opinion on a list of outcome indicators as regards surveillance of antimicrobial resistance and antimicrobial consumption in humans and food-producing animals
ECDC, EFSA and EMA have jointly established a list of harmonised outcome indicators to assist EU Member States in assessing their progress in reducing the use of antimicrobials and antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in both humans and food-producing animals. The proposed indicators have been selected on the basis of data collected by Member States at the time of publication. For humans, the proposed indicators for antimicrobial consumption are: total consumption of antimicrobials (limited to antibacterials for systemic use), ratio of community consumption of certain classes of broad-spectrum to narrow-spectrum antimicrobials and consumption of selected broad-spectrum antimicrobials used in healthcare settings. The proposed indicators for AMR in humans are: meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and 3rd-generation cephalosporin-resistant Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae resistant to aminoglycosides, fluoroquinolones and 3rd-generation cephalosporins, Streptococcus pneumoniae resistant to penicillin and S. pneumoniae resistant to macrolides, and K. pneumoniae resistant to carbapenems. For food-producing animals, indicators for antimicrobial consumption include: overall sales of veterinary antimicrobials, sales of 3rd- and 4th-generation cephalosporins, sales of quinolones and sales of polymyxins. Finally, proposed indicators for AMR in food-producing animals are: full susceptibility to a predefined panel of antimicrobials in E. coli, proportion of samples containing ESBL-/AmpC-producing E. coli, resistance to three or more antimicrobial classes in E. coli and resistance to ciprofloxacin in E. coli. For all sectors, the chosen indicators, which should be reconsidered at least every 5 years, are expected to be valid tools in monitoring antimicrobial consumption and AMR. With the exception of the proposed human AMR indicators, the indicators are in general not suitable to monitor the effects of targeted interventions in a specific sector, such as in a single animal species or animal production sector. Management decisions should never be based on these indicators alone but should take into account the underlying data and their analysis.