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APUA Panama


The most urgent antibiotic resistance problems identified by APUA Panama members are:

  • Lack of regulation in agricultural use
  • Lack of surveillance of antibiotic use and resistance
  • Lack of updated antibiotic use and treatment guidelines
  • MDR Acinetobacter baunnmanii is the main problem, especially in ICU

HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, acute respiratory infections and diarrheal diseases have the highest prevalence in Panama.


APUA Panama was founded in September of 2002. The chapter aims to address the country’s lack of organized data about antibiotic resistance. Panama does, however, have national regulation regarding antibiotic usage, but it is incompletely applied. In particular, the chapter hopes to create a national surveillance system, promote appropriate antibiotic use, foster local and regional research, and develop an education program about prudent antibiotic use. The chapter has collaborated with other Central American APUA Chapters with the aim of establishing a regional baseline for AMR. APUA Panama also intends to establish a cooperative agreement with the health authorities.


In the past year APUA Panama has carried out a number of public education activities about proper antibiotic usage including:

  • Training and education to prescribers
  • Continual education to ehalth and medical personnel
  • Explanation of the correct use of antibiotics in the national newspapers
  • Periodical short presentations on local TV channels
  • Small conferences to the social clubs

In addition, they have been active in promoting prudent antimicrobial use through fostering linkages with the medical community in Panama. The following were some of their accomplishments in 2003:

  • Completion of a proposal to the medicals school to introduce in their curricula a module about the appropriate use of antibiotics;
  • Participation in the national medical Congress;
  • Creation of a training program for medical technicians about the correct methods for antibiotic susceptibility testing;
  • Publicizing APUA-Panama chapter activities in the medical community.

In the upcoming year, APUA Panama plans its first national congress on appropriate use of antimicrobials, an expansion into more rural areas, and cooperative agreements with private companies for the study of national resistance patterns.


Silvio Vega, M.D., Chapter Leader

Eric Caballero, MT. MSc.
Marcela Paredes, MT.
Nestor Sosa, M.D.
Boris Castillo, M.D.
Alfredo Canton, M.D.

Updated April 2011





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