News and Opinions  –  2015

ReAct activities during World Antibiotic Awareness Week: LESSONS 4 LIFE IN KENYA

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19 November 2015


ReAct Africa has partnered with various organizations working on antibiotic resistance. This to organize a series of events during World Antibiotic Awareness week to raise awareness and increase action. The events is part of a projcet called Lessons 4 life and will continue til November 2016. The ABR (antibiotic resistance) Dialogues are a series of informal and participatory discussions about antibiotic resistance, followed by practical ReActions to save antibiotics, all a part of Lessons 4 Life.

On Monday 16th November, the first day of the inaugural World Antibiotic Awareness Week, ReAct, Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP), Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics & Policy (CDDEP) and the Ministry of Health held two processes at the Kenya Medical Training College (KMTC) in Nairobi. KMTC trains 80 percent of all medical personal in Kenya.

Lessons for medical students

The first activity was a Lessons 4 Life carried out with a small selected group of medical students from various disciplines. The discussion was extremely enlightening for all in attendance. For students who not heard much about antibiotic resistance (ABR), this was an opportunity to ask questions and learn from their peers. Other students had opportunities to share their own first hand experiences of antibiotic resistance on field visits and their interest in doing much more research on the same.

A lot was discussed during this session including the need to increase awareness, increase vaccination and increase sanitation as some practical methods to help address antibiotical resistance. More than 80 students signed up to be part of the Lessons 4 Life process and the college showed great interest in pursuing the process further.

The second part of the afternoon was a lecture given to more than 200 medical students by speakers from Kenya Medical Research Institute, GARP, CDDEP and ReAct.

The talks gave an introduction and overview of antibiotic resistance and some of the key issues highlighted were:

  • The tuberculosis pandemic
  • the WHO Global Action Plan on antimicrobial resistance
  • the Lessons 4 Life process
  • CDDDEP and resistance mapping
  • the lack of sufficient data
  • the need for more research
  • and the need for more infection, prevention and control

Lessons 4 Life

Part of the Lessons for Life process are the ABR Dialogues, a series of informal and participatory discussions about antibiotic resistance, followed by practical ReActions to save antibiotics.

Step 1: Awareness: The ABC’s 16 November–16 December 2015
Step 2: Awareness in Action: Protecting Others Beyond Lessons, 16th January-16 April 2016
Step 3: Advocacy & Accountability: Concrete Change 4 Today & Tomorrow, 16 March-November 2016