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Tackling the Intersectoral Challenge of Antimicrobial Resistance: Problem Solving Seminar

3rd term
International Health
3 credits
Academic Year:
2020 - 2021
Instruction Method:
Asynchronous Online with Some Synchronous Online
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Undergrads Allowed:
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructors:
Anthony So

Introduction to Online Learning is required prior to participating in any of the School's Internet-based courses.


Why has it taken decades for the problem of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) to be recognized as the extraordinary threat it is to the miracles of modern day medicine? The UK Review on AMR forecasts that, if unchecked, AMR will cost up to $100 trillion dollars in economic losses by 2050, and by that year, 10 million people will die of drug-resistant infections--more than the number who die of cancer each year today. What steps account for its rise from neglect to one of the four global health issues ever to be discussed by the UN General Assembly?

Examines antimicrobial resistance, a global health challenge that crosses borders, affects our healthcare delivery and our food systems, and threatens the gains made by modern day medicine. Explores the relationship between increased antibiotic use and mounting drug resistance. Considers how traditional business models for incentivizing innovation through greater product sales is at odds with efforts to ensure access and avoid excess in the use of antimicrobials. Addresses the role of increased meat consumption and reliance on intensive farm production in the rise of antibiotic use. Invites students to create strategic plans utilizing key strategic planning tools such as problem and objective trees as well as stakeholder and SWOT analyses. Students propose interprofessional team approaches as they design system-level interventions to respond to antimicrobial resistance.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Examine how global policymaking influences and guides the workings of intergovernmental agencies, national governments and local healthcare delivery and food production
  2. Analyze the ethical tensions in ensuring access, but not excess of antibiotic use in both healthcare delivery and the food production system
  3. Discuss approaches that use monitoring and transparency to ensure accountability for public health goals that could also be applied to AMR
  4. Examine the economics, equity and trade-offs of differing models of pharmaceutical innovation and access
  5. Identify how conflict of interest potentially influences the policy process and how to safeguard this against such special interests
  6. Explain how a One Health approach to tackling antimicrobial resistance reveals both tensions and opportunities for intersectoral collaboration
  7. Assess how economic incentives and financial approaches can exacerbate or mitigate the challenge of antimicrobial resistance
  8. Recognize the disparate impact of policy interventions across countries, sectors and settings of differing resource levels.
  9. Create a strategic plan using Logical Framework Approach tools (problem and objective trees, stakeholder analyses, and SWOT analyses) and design a systems-level intervention that will make a catalytic difference in advancing antimicrobial resistance policy or outcomes
  10. Propose interprofessional team approaches to tackle antimicrobial resistance
Methods of Assessment:

This course is evaluated as follows:

  • 10% Participation
  • 15% Group Work
  • 25% Written Assignment(s)
  • 25% Written Assignment(s)
  • 25% Group Presentation

Instructor Consent:

Consent required for some students

Consent Note:

Consent required for students not in the PT DrPH program. Students must send brief email to the instructor with background and rationale for taking the course. Decisions will be made by Jan.5th.

For consent, contact: