Experts have warned against the increasing trend in the Inappropriate use of antimicrobials in both animals and human beings.
According to World Animal protection (WAP), the growing trend is a global concern, which should worry the public.
Launching a study titled “the Analysis on Antimicrobial Resistance” done by WAP, Dr. Victor Yamo, the Farming Campaigns Manager at WAP, said that the study shows that antibiotics were the most sold product in 58% of agro vets and 43% of pharmacies interviewed.
Dr Yamo noted that antibiotic sales contributed significantly to total revenue in both stores, where 38.8% was in Pharmacies and 30% in Agro vets.
“Dairy (49.6%) and poultry (38.9%) farmers were reported as the most frequent consumers of antibiotics,” he said.
He revealed that Diary and poultry are associated with intensive farming systems that are associated with overuse and misuse of antibiotics to mask poor welfare practices.
He although noted that the levels of knowledge on antibiotics and antimicrobial resistance, were relatively evident. He said the improper practices were evident in all study categories.
“For example, self-prescription, failure to complete prescribed dose and sharing of antibiotics was reported,” he said.
He added, “Every time an antibiotic is given to an animal or consumed by a human being, basically it is an opportunity for that bacteria present to get used to that antibiotic and possibly mutate to be resistance.”
The study launched virtually, was done in November and December 2020. It consisted of a cross-sectional survey targeting veterinary drug stores (agro vets), pharmacies, farmers, and the public across 19 counties in Kenya to determine the knowledge and practices on antimicrobial resistance.
He revealed that, it attracted a total of 1,142 participants across 19 counties in Kenya.
Yamo said that the main objective of this study was to explore the levels of antimicrobial resistance knowledge and prescribing practices among veterinary and human drug vendors, farmers, and the public.
“We also wanted to know the Knowledge and practices related to antibiotics among respondents, this showed significant gaps and need of an urgent effort to mitigate such practices.” He said.
Yamo revealed that Antibiotics were the commonly sold product in human and veterinary stores. This contrasts with the low sales of vaccines and other biosecurity measures.
He asked for a concerted effort to sensitise need for responsible use of antibiotics in human and animal health.
“For instance, farmers need to shift from low welfare practices in which antibiotics are misused to cover up poor welfare, and adopt higher animal welfare standards that ensure animals live a healthy life.” Yamo said.
He noted that, despite having had World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (WAAW) since 2016, the level of awareness of the annual event (November 18to 24,) was found to be low.
Yamo said that Most (81%) of general public interviewed and 80% of farmers were not aware of WAAW.
He called for a concerted effort required in order to achieve a comprehensive action during this year’s WAAW in human and animal health.