The Overall Project
Our research maps different forms of mobilisation against antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and now COVID-19, exploring how such mobilisations address questions of marginalisation. While we have seen questions of inequality rehearsed in relation to COVID-19 they are also very relevant for AMR. Reducing antibiotic use too far may have a greater impact on groups with higher rates of infections, who include those in precarious work, facing overcrowded work places, housing or transport, or with limited access to sanitation. Clinical protocols designed for populations may not account for specific vulnerabilities associated with age, gender, ethnicity, race and class. Increased clinical surveillance may make engagement with healthcare, and getting appropriate care, even more difficult for ethnic minorities or migrants. In a pandemic, but also when common treatments start to fail, health systems are under pressure.
Taking as our focus the question of inequality we ask:
- How do staff in NHS sexual health services respond to antimicrobial resistance in sexually transmitted infections through the use of different diagnostic technologies, prescribing and other aspects of patient treatment and care?
- What does the response to COVID-19 as a rapid health emergency teach us about services’ capacity to respond to the slower moving AMR challenge without worsening health inequalities?
- How is the work of patient care, AMR surveillance and research distributed and coordinated? How does this change when patient care is increasingly delivered through digital technologies?
- How do clinics account for the needs of populations at risk of marginalisation due to sexuality/sexual practice; ethnicity; and lack of access to stable housing or incomes, as well as other factors?
- How do different patients experience clinical care, and how do they understand issues around bacterial infections and antibiotic treatment?
The research team is based at the University of Sussex:
The project is funded by the Wellcome Trust: