World Health Organization report cautions against antibiotics overuse worldwide

WHO maps dangerous misuse of antibiotics

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

"We started seeing more and more cases where the bacteria were resistant to the antibiotics that we have available", Smith noted.

Dr Sally Roberts, clinical lead for the Commission's infection prevention and control programme, says the time taken to develop new antibiotics, combined with a lack of incentive for pharmaceutical companies to produce them, means antibiotic resistance - when bacteria are exposed to an antibiotic and change to resist its effects - is an increasing threat. These compounds, known as broad-spectrum antibiotics, are used to treat the most common types of infections - they're also the cause of most antibiotic resistance. New resistance mechanisms in bacteria are emerging and spreading globally, threatening our ability to treat common infectious diseases.

WHO methodology was developed to align with OIE's (World Organisation for Animal Health) global database on the use of antimicrobials in animals.

The seminar also witnessed Pfizer reaffirming its commitment to working with industry partners and policymakers to help prevent and combat the global public health threat of AMR, which is estimated to cause approximately 10 million deaths globally each year by 2050. This is grossly unfair because over prescription in affluent countries is causing bacterial strains to adapt, which can then move to poorer countries where there was too little antibiotic use to begin with.

"The reason for that is if you miss doses or stop early, your infection may not be adequately treated and it also can contribute to the rise in resistant bacteria", said Rothoff. In 2018 alone, the Pork Checkoff funded almost $400,000 across multiple research areas to evaluate antibiotic alternatives and other methods to minimise on-farm antibiotic use. U.S. Antibiotics Awareness Week, which runs from November 12 to 18, is an opportunity to learn about good antibiotic prescribing practices and use.

Another major contributor to this problem is the overuse of antibiotics in livestock.

"Incentives for public-private partnerships to invest in new medicines, vaccines and diagnostic tools are urgently needed to stimulate the development of new antibiotics and therapies".

Always follow your health worker's advice when using antibiotics.

'This collaborative approach recognises that antibiotic resistance is more than just a health issue and has the potential to affect so many areas of our lives, including farming and food production. In a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers compared antibiotic prescribing in urgent care centers, emergency departments, retail clinics, and medical offices.

But over the decades, bacteria have learned to fight back, building resistance to the same drugs that once reliably vanquished them. If we can prevent the spread of germs by following good hand hygiene this will go some way towards reducing the need for antibiotics.

The main message of this year's WAAW is 'handle antibiotics with care.' World Health Organization is focusing on food safety while OIE will be promoting prudent and responsible use of antimicrobials in animals. "We need to use the antibiotics that are still effective as wisely as possible, ensuring they are only given to patients and animals who really need them", says Dr Millar.

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