Surveillance of antimicrobial resistance: the WHONET program

Clin Infect Dis. 1997 Jan;24 Suppl 1:S157-68. doi: 10.1093/clinids/24.supplement_1.s157.


Genes expressing resistance to each antimicrobial agent emerged after each agent became widely used. More than a hundred such genes now spread selectively through global networks of populations of bacteria in humans or animals treated with those agents. Information to monitor and manage this spread exists in the susceptibility test results of tens of thousands of laboratories around the world. The comparability of those results is uncertain, however, and their storage in paper files or in computer files with diverse codes and formats has made them inaccessible for analysis. The WHONET program puts each laboratory's data into a common code and file format at that laboratory, either by serving as or by translating from its own computer reporting system. It then enables each medical center to analyze its files in ways that help it monitor and manage resistance locally and to merge them with files of other centers for collaborative national or global surveillance of resistance.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bacteria / drug effects*
  • Drug Resistance, Microbial*
  • Drug Resistance, Multiple*
  • Global Health*
  • Humans
  • Medical Informatics Computing*
  • Population Surveillance
  • Software