Isabelle Caniaux, bioMérieux, France; Ann Versporten, Laboratory of Medical Microbiology, Vaccine and Infectious Disease Institute, Faculty of Medicine and Health Science, University of Antwerp,  Belgium; Christine Micolaud, bioMérieux, USA; Marie Françoise Gros and Mark Miller, bioMérieux, France and Herman Goossens, Laboratory of Medical Microbiology, Vaccine and Infectious Disease Institute, Faculty of Medicine and Health Science, University of Antwerp, Belgium

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is on the rise globally, and is now recognized as a major public health challenge by many governments, world organizations and healthcare leaders. The need to stem the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, prevent the spread of resistant infections and preserve the efficacy of existing antibiotics is of paramount importance. Recent reports have highlighted the essential role of in vitro diagnostics as well as surveillance and education in combating AMR (1).

A world leader in in vitro diagnostics, specializing in infectious diseases, bioMérieux has a long-standing commitment to fighting AMR. This commitment is central to the company’s mission, as we support healthcare professionals in their daily combat against this major public health threat.

Given the importance of surveillance in the fight against resistance (2), bioMérieux committed in 2015 to be the unique sponsor of the Global Point Prevalence Survey (Global-PPS), an initiative fully in line with its activities and vision. Unprecedented in scope, the Global-PPS initiative aims to provide a unique overview of antimicrobial consumption and resistance rates in hospitals worldwide, as well as raising awareness of the problem of resistance and the inappropriate use of antimicrobials.

bioMérieux’s long-term mission to combat AMR

A family-founded company with a clear focus in clinical microbiology, bioMérieux provides effective diagnostic solutions for antibiotic susceptibility testing, screening, infection control, outbreak management and drug resistance trend monitoring, as well as appropriate antibiotic therapy guidance. The company is also a strong advocate of actions that raise awareness and drive behavioural change in the field of antimicrobial resistance through education and advocacy.

For example, the “World HAI/Resistance Forum” organized by bioMérieux, has regularly provided leading experts in the field with the opportunity to share their global experience and propose concrete actions to respond to the current and future challenges of AMR. One such action has been the implementation of a Global Point Prevalence Survey to provide surveillance data on antibiotic use and resistance rates in hospitals around the world.

Global-PPS – a “snapshot” of resistance

The initiative is supervised by a European Task Force of leading experts (Professors Herman Goossens, Vincent Jarlier, Dilip Nathwani and Peter Zarb) and carried out by Ann Versporten at the University of Antwerp (Belgium). The methodology of the survey is standardized, enabling the collection of valid and comparable data. The survey is very easy to conduct. It consists of a one-shot collection of data (one day only) for all hospitalized patients receiving antimicrobials on the day of the survey.

The findings of the first edition of the Global-PPS in 2015 (3) (see Figure 1) highlighted huge discrepancies in antimicrobial use and resistance levels between countries and hospitals; and the need to optimize prescription policies. They also clearly indicated that there is a need for improved antimicrobial prescribing policies in all countries, supported by diagnostic tests.


2017 – a new Global-PPS focuses on LMICs

Following the valuable insights obtained through the first Global-PPS and its potential to reduce resistance levels and improve antimicrobial prescription practices in hospitals worldwide, bioMérieux renewed its support for a second Global-PPS in 2017.

This new edition focuses on low- and medium-income countries (LMICs) where high antimicrobial prescription rates and resistance levels have been reported. Most of the time, they do not have access to surveillance networks.

The new survey is being launched together with a series of educational tools to support LMICs, in particular, a PPS E-learning tool developed by the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (BSAC) and launched with bioMérieux’s support. This training module, associated with other tools, will help hospitals to develop and implement customized action plans based on their Global-PPS results and local priorities.

Find out more and join the 2017 Global-PPS at



1. O’Neill J. Reports on antimicrobial resistance. (2014-2016)

2. Perez F, Villegas MV. The role of surveillance systems in confronting the global crisis of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Curr Opin Infect Dis. 2015;28:375-83

3. Versporten A et al. The Global Point Prevalence Survey of Antimicrobial Consumption and Resistance (Global-PPS) in 335 Hospitals Worldwide. 12 minutes oral presentation, ECCMID 2016, Amsterdam