Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is one of the most serious public health concerns in the world. Although AMR occurs naturally over time, the misuse and overuse of antimicrobials is speeding this process. An example of antimicrobial misuse is when a patient with a viral infection is given an antibiotic used to treat a bacterial infection. Another example is a patient with a bacterial infection taking the wrong antibiotic for that infection.
Antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST) is used to determine which specific antimicrobials bacteria or fungi are sensitive to. Laboratorians perform AST so that clinicians know which antimicrobial will effectively treat a patient’s infection.
The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) and CLSI have partnered to provide training on AST for laboratorians with a webinar series on the topic. Webinar topics include fundamentals of AST, antimicrobial stewardship, and infection prevention. One of the webinar series for advanced AST focuses on cases in which specialized susceptibility testing for unusual organisms should be performed.