The United Kingdom (UK) is determined to combat antimicrobial resistance by taking a 'One-Health' approach across the human, animal and environment sectors and in collaboration with other nations, partners and the international community.

New UK National Action Plan 2024 - 2029

2024-2029 AMR National Plan

This new plan to tackle antimicrobial resistance, a global issue that makes infections difficult or impossible to treat, has been launched on 8 May 2024. 

The national action plan will commit the UK to reducing its use of antimicrobials - such as antibiotics, antifungals and antivirals - in humans and animals, strengthen surveillance of drug-resistant infections before they emerge and incentivise industry to develop the next generation of treatments.

This national action plan builds on progress made over the past two decades to address AMR in the UK. It focuses on many of the same key areas as the 2019 to 2024 national action plan, with activity divided across four themes:

  1. Reducing the need for, and unintentional exposure to, antimicrobials
  2. Optimising the use of antimicrobials
  3. Investing in innovation, supply and access
  4. Being a good global partner

Action Plan

UK 20-year Vision and 5-year Action Plans for Antimicrobial Resistance

To contain and control AMR by 2040, the UK Government published a UK 20-year vision for antimicrobial resistance - GOV.UK (  and a UK 5-year action plan for antimicrobial resistance 2019 to 2024 - GOV.UK (

The 2019-2024 UK 5-year National Action Plan (NAP) also had a “One Health” approach covering animals, the environment and human health and was delivered in close collaboration with all the devolved UK administrations.  A major focus of the plan was to make sure current antibiotics stay effective by reducing the number of resistant infections and supporting veterinarians to prescribe appropriately.

Northern Ireland AMR Action Plan 2019-2024

In a collaborative effort between the Department of Health, DAERA and Food Standards Agency NI, a Northern Ireland 5-Year Action Plan entitled "Changing the Culture 2019 to 2024 - One Health" was produced which compliments the UK Action Plan and addresses issues specific to Northern Ireland. The NI Action Plan reflected the priority areas for action from human and animal health, agriculture and the environment perspectives, as well as reflecting the commitments in the UK NAP.

DAERA managed the delivery of key actions in the NI Action Plan and contributions to the UK NAP, during the pandemic.  The Department of Health have resumed the lead following the COVID-19 response. These actions have made progress towards curbing the spread of antimicrobial resistance.

DAERA collaborate with a wide range of key stakeholders in the agricultural, education and research sectors to promote and support industry led initiatives, surveillance, novel research, training and dissemination of relevant information and advice to farmers and the wider rural community on AMR.

Statutory AMR monitoring

EU Monitoring Programme

Commission Implementing Decision (EU) No. 2020/1729 requires NI, under the Windsor Framework, to monitor and report AMR zoonotic and commensal bacteria in healthy animals at slaughter and in 3rd Country fresh meat samples at Border Inspection Posts and fresh meat at retail.

Caecal samples are taken from broilers and fattening pigs at slaughter, on a biennial basis for each species.  DAERA Meat Inspectors undertake the collection of samples from approved slaughterhouses participating in the monitoring programme.

During 2022, broilers at slaughter were monitored and tested for AMR along with any salmonella isolates detected from the Nation Control Plan (NCP) sampling under EU Regulation 2073/2005.  In 2023, pigs at slaughter were monitored and tested.

AMR monitoring by DAERA Portal Inspection staff of 3rd country imports of fresh pork and beef meat commenced in 2023. The meat type is rotated on a on a biennial basis, during 2024 3rd Country fresh meat imports of chicken and turkey will be monitored. The Food Standards Agency NI (FSA NI) is responsible for monitoring and reporting AMR zoonotic and commensal bacteria isolated from fresh meat at retail.

Under the Windsor Framework, NI continues to report the results to the Commission annually and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) publish the national isolate-based AMR data and results.

UK Harmonized AMR Monitoring

The UK Harmonized AMR Monitoring programme is coordinated by the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) and aligns with EU monitoring.  NI samples broilers, turkeys and pigs at slaughter, on a biennial basis for each species, at a rate compared to overall UK production.  Results are presented in the UK  Veterinary Antimicrobial Resistance and Sales Surveillance 2022 - GOV.UK ( (Annual VARSS Report).

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