A survey carried out within Member States of the European Union and Norway shows that in all but two countries national surveillance of microorganisms resistant to antibiotics existed in December 2000. In Italy, Ireland and Scotland, the systems were set up very recently (respectively in 1998, 1999 and 1999). Moreover, excepting of Ireland and Scotland, all countries have a national system for data collection on the consumption of antibiotics, namely since 2000 in Austria, Italy and Luxembourg. Several of these systems were set up after 1998 when the recommendations of the European conference 'The Microbial Threat' held in Copenhague were published. In addition, a certain number of other measures have been undertaken since then: education campaigns to the population in England and Wales, in Ireland or in France, creation of committees specifically in charge of consumption surveillance in Italy or of the prevention of resistance in Belgium or in Ireland, publications of recommendations on the good use of antibiotics in Austria and in Finland, etc.