Union Health Minister JP Nadda launched Tuesday the logo "Use with Care" for antibiotics at the International Conference on Antimicrobial Resistance in New Delhi. The three-day conference, which began Tuesday, is being organised by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in association with the World Health Organisation (WHO) Regional Office for South Asia. The conference aims to highlight the health and economic problems created by excessive use of antibiotics and the measures taken to address them.

The minister, while reiterating India's commitment and resolve to work towards combating antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) globally, said: "AMR is not only a public health challenge, but has grave economic consequences, too, which can be avoided."

Nadda said India needs awareness on rational use of drugs.

"Not only patients, but pharmacists and doctors also need to be made aware of the rational use of drugs and antibiotics. A media campaign of 'Medicine strips with Red Line' will help create mass awareness against misuse of antibiotics," he said during the inaugural session of the conference.

The Union health ministry's AMR awareness campaign urges people not to use medicines marked with a red vertical line, including antibiotics, without a doctor's prescription

The minister said sanitation, vaccination and maintaining good lifestyle can also go a long way in preventing the use of antibiotics.

Nadda said prescription auditing â€” review of healthcare procedures and documentation — is also important in combating AMR.

India presided over the 68th session of the World Health assembly proceedings in Geneva (May 18-26, 2015) which adopted a Global Action Plan on AMR to prepare a blueprint with specific actions and timelines for WHO as well as member states to address the growing threat of AMR, according to the health ministry's official statement.

The UN General Assembly will hold a high-level segment on AMR in 2016 to further highlight the need for comprehensive implementation of the plan.