International experts to discuss urgent need for global action on antimicrobial resistance


WHO Collaborating Centre at York University will host Q&A with leaders in AMR on Wednesday

TORONTO, November 16, 2020 – As the race to find new vaccines and treatments for the novel coronavirus accelerates worldwide, experts are also coming together this week to address the increasingly urgent global challenge of antimicrobial resistance.

November 18th marks the start of World Antimicrobial Awareness Week– a time to recognize the urgent action needed to prevent the spread of drug resistant infections. Increasing drug resistance is being driven by widespread overuse of these essential drugs in medicine and agriculture. High rates of resistance to commonly used antimicrobials are rapidly reducing our ability to treat many common bacterial or viral infections, and prevent infection during surgery.

The World Health Organization has called for global action on antimicrobial resistance, and one year ago, designated York University’s Global Strategy Lab as the WHO Collaborating Centre on Global Governance of Antimicrobial Resistance. The Collaborating Centre is focused on the global policies, commitments and legal arrangements that will be needed to conserve antimicrobials, ensure access to them and promote innovation to discover new antimicrobials.

To mark the start of World Antimicrobial Awareness Week, and to celebrate this new collaboration, York University and the WHO are presenting a Q&A panel with three international experts on antimicrobial resistance:

Professor Dame Sally Davies, UK GovernmentEnvoy on Antimicrobial Resistance

Dr. Peter Singer, Special Advisor to the Director General of the World Health Organization

Professor Steven J. Hoffman, Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre on Global Governance of Antimicrobial Resistance

In addition, Dr. Theresa Tam, Chief Public Health Officer of Canada, will make introductory remarks at the event, along with York University President and Vice-Chancellor Rhonda Lenton, and Faculty of Health Dean Paul McDonald, who will moderate the Q&A panel.

Professor Steven Hoffman, director of the WHO Collaborating Centre, and managing director Susan Rogers Van Katwyk, will speak about the work of the Centre.

WHAT:           International panel on antimicrobial resistance threat to global health

WHEN:           Wednesday, November 18, 2020, 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

WHERE:        Zoom webinar and livestream event,

RSVP:            Members of the media who wish to submit written questions to the panel should contact Media Relations in advance for a link to the Zoom webinar and passcode.

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Media Contacts:
Janice Walls, York University Media Relations, cell 416-455-4710,

Anjum Nayyar, York University Media Relations, cell 437-242-1547,