Student Research: Anika Larson
, Environmental and Occupational Health (EOH), 2017
Faculty Advisor: Peter Rabinowitz
Student Coordinator for the Washington Integrated Surveillance for Antimicrobial Resistance (WISAR) Database
Prior to the introduction of the Washington State Integrated Surveillance for Antimicrobial Resistance (WISAR) database, there was no antibiogram integrated across Washington State or routine tracking of antibiotic resistance on a state level, nor cross-sector comparison of antibiotic resistance in animals, humans and the environment. The lack of integrated surveillance represents a missed opportunity for early detection and evidence-based prevention and management of antimicrobial resistance in our state. WISAR is an integrated database of antimicrobial resistance data across human, animal, and environmental health sectors in Washington State, which can be used to generate prevalence and trends data from each sector and compare across species or sectors. The goals of the database include establishing a baseline of resistance across sectors; monitoring resistance trends over time; and eventually, the capacity to evaluate and prioritize One Health antibiotic stewardship efforts in Washington State. My role as Student Coordinator was to develop use cases of the database, including reports and antibiograms; to present the current database progress to working groups and partners; and to assist in bringing new partnerships to the database. The results of the practicum at this point include a summary report of the database for public use; an institution-specific report to provide to one of the key database partners; and drafts of multiple antibiograms across human and animal sectors. Challenges have included navigating communication with the partner organizations who provide data to the WISAR database, particularly ensuring that all partners are confident that the data they provide to the database will be de-identified and anonymous in publications. Next steps for the database include finalizing the scripts and instructions used to generate reports and antibiograms so that all use cases of the database are reproducible, as well as working with partners to strengthen ongoing data sharing relationships.