In Switzerland too, antimicrobial resistance is a serious threat. A considerable number of studies, many of them instigated by pharmaceutical companies, have been conducted to study resistance in human medicine. However, these studies generally concentrate on a specific city or region, and on a few pathogenic bacteria, so that they are not very representative. Being circumscribed in time, they do not make it possible to monitor the emergence and spread of resistant strains. Thus, even with respect to the compartment of human medicine only, the global situation of resistance in our country, though viewed as potentially problematic, is little known for the time being, in particular as concerns its dynamics.
New measures have been launched, for example by the Federal Office of Public Health which made it obligatory to declare the sensitivity of Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains to various antibiotics. This office also monitors resistance of salmonella (Salmonella typhimurium in particular) and of meningococci by the national centres in Berne and Geneva, respectively. A study is currently attempting to draw up a representative picture of pneumococci resistance. Since mid 1999 the Federal Veterinary Office has for its part been conducting a study of resistance development in the principal pathogenic micro-organisms in veterinary medicine as compared to the 1980s. A further study deals with resistance and the impact of the ban on the use of antibiotics as feed additives for livestock.