Speakers warn against needless use of antibiotics

WHO warns 'urgent action' is needed to tackle global misuse of antibiotics

Inappropriate use of antibiotics can lead to resistant bacteria that cause disease in both animals and plants, and potentially in humans via contact with infected animals or contaminated food. Antibiotics are not an everlasting panacea for all illnesses - they don't ever work against viruses and using them inappropriately drives antibiotic resistance and results in drug resistant infections which can't be treated. This helps prevent antimicrobial resistance from forming and keeps antibiotics working, for humans and animals alike. These antimicrobials are used to treat common infections.

"Across the continent, laboratories can help by looking out for evidence of resistance in the bacteria they see, and to feed this information into national and regional efforts to understand how it spreads and where it poses the greatest risk".

I think there is a misconception that scientists will somehow "solve" resistance, by inventing a new antibiotic. On Nov. 6 the Health Department posted an update saying that this strain of bacteria is extensively drug resistant or XDR, meaning that most drugs used to treat these bacteria won't work.

Never demand antibiotics if your health worker says you don't need them.

Japan's overall consumption of antibiotics, at 14.19 DDD per 1,000 inhabitants, was about half that of South Korea, but 1.1 percent of Japanese consumption was in the "reserve" category, far more than 0.2 percent in South Korea, the report showed. The leftover antibiotic may not be effective against the bacteria causing the new infection.

Discovered in the 1920s, antibiotics saved tens of millions of lives by effectively fighting those diseases triggered by bacteria, such as pneumonia, tuberculosis, and meningitis, among others.

A prime example of pig farmers' long-term dedication to antibiotic stewardship, public health and animal care is the industry's Pork Quality AssuranceĀ® Plus certification programme, now in its third decade.

"Where patients are not sure of how and when to take their antibiotics or other medications, advice should be sought from a pharmacist or other healthcare professionals", he cautioned. Dr Owen Kaluwa, the WHO Country Representative to Ghana, said this year, the Organisation had introduced sub-themes to showcase the huge work underway to tackle antimicrobial resistance, which demonstrated "how antibiotics are linked to humans, animals and the environment".

Almost three quarters (73%) of those surveyed agree that the federal government should provide incentives to encourage increased private sector investment in the development of new antibiotics, reflecting consensus among 80% of Republicans, 76% of Democrats and 63% of Independents.

Reliable data on antibiotic consumption is essential to help countries to raise awareness of appropriate antimicrobial use, to inform policy and regulatory changes to optimize use, to identify areas for improvement and monitor the impact of interventions, and to improve the procurement and supply of medicines.

The repercussions of antibiotic resistance can be devastating.

Dr Kaluwa also called for increased investment by the government, funding agencies and the private sector to implement actions that would ensure that there was safe and secure medicine across generations. Some 83% of those surveyed believe pharmaceutical companies should develop more antibiotics.

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