Antimicrobial stewardship verification in the Australian Chicken Meat Industry


Antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) is the “the multifaceted and dynamic approaches required to sustain the clinical efficacy of antimicrobials by optimizing drug use, choice, dosing, duration, and route of administration, while minimizing the emergence of resistance and other adverse effects”. The AMS model being introduced to the major chicken meat companies follows the 5R approach: Responsibility The prescribing veterinarian accepts responsibility for the decision to use an antimicrobial agent and recognises that such use can have adverse consequences beyond the recipient. Reduction Wherever possible, means of reducing the use of antimicrobial agents should be implemented. Reduction in use may arise, for example, from enhanced infection control, biosecurity, vaccination, targeted treatment of individual animals, or reduction in the duration of treatment. Refinement Each use of an antimicrobial agent should incorporate into the design of the dosage regimen all available information on the patient, the pathogen, the epidemiology and the antimicrobial agent to ensure the likelihood of selecting antimicrobial resistance is minimised while the likelihood of clinical efficacy is maximised. Replacement The use of antimicrobial agents should be replaced whenever available evidence supports the efficacy and safety of an alternative whose benefit to risk balance is assessed by the prescriber as superior to the intended use of an antimicrobial agent. Review Antimicrobial stewardship initiatives should be reviewed regularly and a process of continuous improvement adopted to evaluate compliance with initiatives and ensure that antimicrobial use practices set or reflect contemporary best practice. This project will for the first time develop a verification plan that provides objective evidence of AMS programme implementation.


Chicken Meat

Research Organisation

The University of Adelaide

Objective Summary

Objective 1: To review the key elements of the AMS plan (Responsibility, Reduction, Refinement, Replacement, Review) and develop a method of assessing implementation of each element by each company. Objective 2: To apply a participatory approach to the development of an AMS verification programme for implementation in each of the seven (7) major chicken meat companies as either a self audit or audit by an independent third party. Objective 3: To complete a pilot verification exercise in each company, review learnings and finalise the plan.

Project Code


Project Stage


Project Start Date

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Project Completion Date

Monday, March 30, 2020

National Priority

Promoting and maintaining good health

National Priority

CME-Develop and implement measures to improve industry's impact on the enviroment