Global Health Priorities
New publication

Accountability key to implement agreements fighting antibiotic resistance

Post.doc. Trygve Ottersen has published an article as part of a special symposium in Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics on the global treath of antibiotic resistance.

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The paper is part of a special symposium on antibiotic resistance and is premised on the importance of accountability for making international agreements effective. The paper examines the central aspects of accountability relationships in international agreements and lays out ways to strengthen them. Specifically, the paper provides a menu of accountability mechanisms that facilitate transparency, oversight, complaint, and enforcement, describe how these mechanisms can promote compliance, and identify key considerations for a proposed international agreement on antibiotic resistance.

Hoffman SJ, Ottersen T. Addressing Antibiotic Resistance Requires Robust International Accountability Mechanisms. J Law Med Ethics 2015; 43 Suppl 3: 53-64.


Press release:
What Will It Take to Address the Global Threat of Antibiotic Resistance?


Among the many global health challenges facing the world today, antibiotic resistance is a problem that requires true global collective action.  Medical evidence shows that drug-resistant diseases can spread across borders from something as simple as a traveler returning home from abroad.  What kind of actions must be taken to address the threat of antibiotic resistance (ABR)?  And what legal, political and economic tools are needed to achieve this level of action?


On Wednesday July 22, 2015 the Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics will publish a series of eleven concise articles detailing how ABR depends on global collective action, and what tools are needed to achieve it.  Overseen by the University of Ottawa’s Professor Steven J. Hoffman and Boston University’s Professor Kevin Outterson, the series sought input from experts from a diverse range of academic and professional disciplines – each of whom brings a unique perspective to advancing global health.


Earlier this year, Canada’s auditor-general urged the government and Canada’s public health authorities to start taking the threat of drug-resistant infections more seriously.  Put bluntly, the auditor-general concluded that Canada is not doing enough federally or provincially.  The articles in this new series aim to begin providing evidence-informed guidance on how states and non-state actors can muster a comprehensive response to the global threat of ABR.  It is a must-read for anyone interested in how the worlds of science and politics can come together in the interest of global health.