On 1 November 2022, Radboud University Medical Centre (Radboudumc) and University of Antwerp joined forces to launch the drive-AMS project. The official kick-off meeting was held on 9 December 2022 with the participation of all implementing partners: the Institute of Hygiene from Lithuania, the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki from Greece, the Iuliu Hațieganu University of Medicine and Pharmacy from Romania, and the University Hospital Centre of São João from Portugal.
In March 2023, drive-AMS organised its first in-person event, the Training of Trainers in Nijmegen, hosted by Radboudumc. The course combined their Dutch AMS Masterclass and the Global-PPS tool and expertise. The future trainers were taught how to guide professionals and policy makers through developing and implementing a successful Antimicrobial Stewardship Program in their hospital, healthcare system, region or even country.
The next event was in June, the country leads of the drive-AMS partner institutions held an online meeting to discuss the progress of the project and any challenges faced during the first 6 months of implementation. From the country reporting, it was concluded that significant progress was made with the adaptation of the course to the national contexts and needs.
In September, Radboudumc hosted a capacity building event for the drive-AMS online course on implementation science and behaviour change. The main aim of the workshop was to describe how you can implement antimicrobial stewardship, this includes the improvement strategy for antibiotic use. Country leads and hospital management professionals from the four partner countries participated in this interactive event.
At the end of November, drive-AMS participated in the World Antibiotic Awareness Week. For this occasion, we created a dedicated campaign showcasing the contribution of the project in fighting AMR.
As of 2024, the next phase of the project will commence: the partners will organise their own course on AMS. For this course, faculty members from the core institutions Radboudumc and the University of Antwerp will support the four partners. Each partner will be hosting a meeting for 40 participants from 8-10 different hospitals in their country to pass on the knowledge and educate the participants on how they can create sustainable programmes as well in their own hospitals.
The courses will be held on the following dates:
Up next, in the third and final phase, which will take place in 2024-2025, the partners will again organise a course but without the assistance from the core institutions. By this point, the drive-AMS philosophy will hopefully have been incorporated into the national AMR action plans and will continue to be implemented across hospitals in the partner countries.