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Public Awareness and Educational Activities to Improve Knowledge and Understanding of Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) in Japan

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      BACKGROUND

      Public awareness and education are important avenues?for promoting countermeasures for antimicrobial resistance (AMR), and November has been designated as AMR awareness month in Japan since 2016. Accordingly, our objective was to investigate effective activities to improve knowledge and understanding of AMR targeted at the public.

      METHODS

      A public awareness campaign was implemented in Mie prefecture (population:1.8 million) in Japan in November 2017 and 2018. We made leaflets and posters announcing AMR awareness month and open lecture event for citizens and distributed them to all hospitals (n=100), healthcare facilities for the elderly (n=262), and health insurance pharmacies (n=722) in Mie Prefecture. We set up billboard posters at the Tsu railway station (twenty-six thousand passengers?daily), distributed leaflets in front of the station and in shopping centers, and advertised the event using a local circular notice. We also perform bus wrapping advertisement to grasp intention of citizens.

      RESULTS

      One hundred and 10 citizens in 2017 and 157 in 2018 participated in the open lecture event for citizens entitled “Let's got together well with bacteria and the medicine: Let's know AMR”. We gave a lecture and set up an experience booth for the public to learn how to wash their hands and to make a microscopic examination of bacteria. We made original balls, can batches, magnets and bags printed with an original AMR image character and message as communication materials, and distributed them to participants. Half of the participants knew the term “AMR” on a questionnaire in 2018. Our educational activities were introduced on local TV and newspaper.

      CONCLUSIONS

      The term “AMR” was not familiar with citizens until a few years ago, however, half of participants in the 2018 open lecture already knew it. Our bundle approach to the public may have an impact on improving knowledge and understanding of AMR.
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