The Antibiotic Resistance Surveillance Project (ARSP)

The Antibiotic Resistance Surveillance Project (ARSP) which produces data from blood culture isolates was started by the SLCM in a few selected hospitals in 2009 and was expanded to all hospitals with consultant microbiologists by 2013.

In 2009, at the initiation of ARSP, collecting data which is comparable and is of international standard was difficult due to the non-availability of culture identification systems and the uniformity of antibiotic resistance testing. To overcome these difficulties, the scope of the activities included introducing identification of blood culture isolates to the species level, supplying the essential antibiotic discs, streamlining the supply chain of the Ministry of Health to provide the necessary items to sustain the project and introducing CLSI antibiotic sensitivity testing method in all participant laboratories.

In the first phase of the project, data on all Gram-negative culture isolates were entered into a tailor made software. A few workshops were conducted by SLCM to train the microbiologists, medical officers (where available) and the technical staff of microbiology laboratories to carry out the project. Data dissemination was planned through scientific presentations and publications.


A multi centre laboratory study of Gram negative bacterial blood stream  infections in Sri Lanka   –  ARSP Working Group, The Sri Lanka College of Microbiologists