Neonatal sepsis and antimicrobial resistance in Africa
Mortality rates in children younger than 5 years have reduced by half globally since 1990, but neonatal mortality rates remain high and far from the Sustainable Development Goal target of less than 12 deaths per 1000 livebirths by 2030. Sepsis is a leading cause of death in the first 28 days of life, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. Bacterial sepsis is dominated by Gram-negative pathogens with substantial antimicrobial resistance, contributing to this region having the highest death rates attributable to antimicrobial resistance globally. WHO’s antibiotic treatment guidelines have not kept pace with the exponential rise of antimicrobial resistance in sub- Saharan Africa, potentially exacerbating neonatal sepsis deaths. We, as representatives of the African Neonatal Association, call for urgent action and innovation (panel).
Pui-Ying Iroh Tam, Adrie Bekker, Olufunke Bosede Bolaji, Gwendoline Chimhini, Angela Dramowski, Felicity Fitzgerald, Alemayehu Mekonnen Gezmu, John Baptist Nkuranga, Uduak Okomo, Alexander Stevenson, Jonathan P Strysko, the African Neonatal Association Sepsis Working Group