Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Ministry of Health has emphasized that antimicrobial resistance (AMR) poses a threat to global health because it can negatively affect the quality of health services.

"The health threat, which is called a silent pandemic or antimicrobial resistance, is the ability of microorganisms to survive against antimicrobials so that the effectiveness of treatment declines, infectious diseases become harder to cure," a representative of the director of pharmaceutical management and services at the ministry, Hidayati Masud, said at a media gathering with World Health Organization (WHO) and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) representatives here on Wednesday.

The quality of health services could decline and cause morbidity to increase and medical costs to rise, she noted.

AMR can increase the potential for the emergence of infectious diseases due to resistance. It is feared that surgery may no longer be carried out, and the number of deaths due to tetanus or childbirth may increase.

This is what makes AMR one of the top 10 global health threats that need to be watched out for.

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Even though at first, antimicrobials were used as the primary treatment in the management of infectious diseases, currently, the discovery of microorganisms is declining.

"It is feared that there will be a condition like the era before antibiotics were discovered, where many infectious diseases emerged," she pointed out.

She emphasized that AMR can hinder the achievement of the sustainable development goals (SGDs), including burdening state finances in National Health Insurance (JKN).

"The number of deaths due to AMR that continues to grow must become our concern. The incidence of antimicrobial resistance is closely related to the widespread and inappropriate use of antimicrobials in the community," she underlined.

She also expressed concern over the lack of knowledge and information about the use of antimicrobials, especially antibiotics, which could cause AMR to spread across the world.

One of the Indonesian government's efforts to improve the handling of AMR has been the formulation of a national action plan to control antimicrobial resistance for 2020–2024, which has been outlined in the Decree of the Coordinating Ministry for Human Development and Culture Number 7 of 2021.

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Translator: Hreeloita Dharma, Raka Adji
Editor: Suharto
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