Antimicrobial Resistance (AGAR)

The Australian Group on Antimicrobial Resistance (AGAR) National Resistance Surveillance program (AGAR-NRS) aims to collect data on antimicrobial resistance, focussing on severe bacterial disease (bacteraemia, or bloodstream infection) in Australia.

AGAR is a network of scientists and clinicians from major microbiology laboratories around Australia, that has been conducting national resistance surveillance for more than 25 years (See the AGAR website for more information, including AGAR Publications and AGAR Surveys.). For the last decade AGAR has been funded by the Australian Department of Health and Aging to conduct antimicrobial resistance surveillance on key human bacterial pathogens.

The Group has recently elected to move to a surveillance program structure more in line with international practice, such as that found in Europe (EARS-NET). This will involve collecting prospectively not only resistance data on blood culture isolates, but also some basic demographic and outcome data. The collection of demographic and outcome data will enhance greatly the analysis beyond simple percentage resistances to examine risk factors and risk subgroups The output of these analyses will be of much greater value in designing resistance management strategies for Australia than simple percent resistance data.

At least 29 sites from all states/territories are expected to contribute data, to give a representative Australia-wide sample. The surveillance will record antimicrobial susceptibilities of all isolates and will record on all or a subset (depending on workload) of bacteraemic episodes at each participating site:

  • Mode of acquisition of infection (hospital versus community)
  • Risk factors for bacteraemia (serious underlying medical conditions, indwelling medical devices, etc)
  • Source of bacteraemia
  • Principal clinical manifestation
  • Crude mortality at 7 and 30 days
  • Principal antibiotic treatment used
  • Rates of bacteraemia per occupied bed days at hospital sites

Current Antimicrobial Resistance Surveys include:

  • ASSOP (Australian Staphylococcus aureus Sepsis Outcome Program)
  • AESOP (Australian Enterococcus Sepsis Outcome Program)
  • EnSOP (Enterobacteriaceae Sepsis Outcome Program)

Participating Sites

  • Sydney South West Pathology Service – Liverpool, NSW
  • Royal North Shore Hospital, NSW
  • Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, NSW
  • Westmead Hospital, NSW
  • Concord Hospital, NSW
  • Nepean Hospital, NSW
  • Douglass Hanly Moir Pathology, NSW
  • The Canberra Hospital, ACT
  • Alfred Hospital, VIC
  • Royal Women’s and Children’s Hospital, VIC
  • St Vincent’s Hospital, VIC
  • Austin Health, VIC
  • Monash Medical Centre VIC
  • Pathology Queensland, Central, QLD
  • Pathology Queensland, Cairns Base Hospital, QLD
  • Pathology Queensland, Gold Coast, QLD
  • Pathology Queensland, Prince Charles Hospital, QLD
  • Pathology Queensland, Princess Alexandra Hospital, QLD
  • Sullivan Nicolaides Pathology, Greenslopes Private Hospital, QLD
  • SA Pathology, Royal Adelaide Hospital, SA
  • SA Pathology, Flinders Medical Centre, SA
  • SA Pathology, Women’s and Children’s Hospital, SA
  • Royal Darwin Hospital, NT
  • PathWest Laboratory Medicine, Fremantle Hospital, WA
  • PathWest Laboratory Medicine, Royal Perth Hospital, WA
  • St John of God Pathology, WA
  • PathWest Laboratory Medicine, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, WA
  • Royal Hobart Hospital, TAS
  • Launceston General Hospital, TAS

AGAR Committee Members

Tony Korman
tel               +61 3 9594 4564
fax              +61 3 9594 4533

Despina Kotsanas
tel               +61 3 9594 6851
fax              +61 3 9594 4533