Industry ready to fight superbugs

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September 24, 2020 5:00 am Australia/Sydney

MSD welcomes recommendations in new antimicrobial resistance white paper

MSD Australia has welcomed today’s launch of ‘Fighting Superbugs’, a white paper from
MTPConnect addressing antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in Australia, and the establishment of
the Australian Antimicrobial Resistance Network (AAMRNet).

The white paper, based on the inaugural meeting of Australia’s antimicrobial resistance
stakeholders led by MTPConnect, provides recommendations for new and improved
approaches for addressing drug resistance, including the need for pricing and health
technology assessment (HTA) reform to better capture the full value of antimicrobials in the
HTA process; and providing incentives for continued private sector investment in
antimicrobial research and development.1

The paper acknowledges that industry is a key contributor in addressing the AMR challenge
due to its expertise in product research and development, and as a manufacturer and
supplier of products to combat AMR. In acknowledgment of broken market for novel
antimicrobials, the paper recommends that new reimbursement and procurement models are
considered in Australia, such as an alternative payment scheme, including models where
payments are delinked from sales volume.2

Mr Michael Azrak, Managing Director of MSD Australia, said that this national focus on AMR
comes at a critical time as AMR continues to be one of the world’s most pressing global
health priorities: “MSD is one of the few remaining large pharmaceutical companies investing
in antimicrobial research and development and we are committed to working with
Government, and as a member of AAMRNet, to help drive recognition and re-stimulate
innovation for these therapies.3

“We have been advocating, for some time now, the need for an innovative funding model for
novel antimicrobials, which could help Australia tackle the challenges of antimicrobial
resistance. It is a significant step forward that this approach is recognised across our
broader industry and listed as a recommendation in today’s Fighting Superbugs white
paper,” continued Mr Azrak.

“However, a new funding pathway for novel antimicrobials is just one piece of the puzzle. In
order to slow the development of AMR in Australia, all stakeholders must partner more
closely to improve stewardship, surveillance, diagnostics and the regulatory
framework.4 We welcome the opportunity to work with AAMRNet, to drive change and action
to combat AMR in Australia and demonstrate our global leadership in addressing this urgent
health priority.”

MSD was present at the inaugural meeting of antimicrobial resistance stakeholders which
resulted in the white paper, and is also represented on the steering committee of AAMRNet.

Copyright © September 2020 Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, New
Jersey, U.S.A. All rights reserved. Merck Sharp & Dohme (Australia) Pty Limited. Level 1, Building A, 26 Talavera
Road, Macquarie Park NSW 2113. AU-NON00299. First Issued September 2020


  1. MTPConnect, Fighting Superbugs – A Report on the Inaugural Meeting of Australia’s
    Antimicrobial Resistance Stakeholders, 2020
  2. MTPConnect, Fighting Superbugs – A Report on the Inaugural Meeting of Australia’s
    Antimicrobial Resistance Stakeholders, 2020
  3. MSD Australia, MSD 2020-2021 Budget Submission, 2019
  4. MSD Australia, MSD 2020-2021 Budget Submission, 2019