Antibiotics are fundamental to modern medicine, essential for treating everything from routine skin infections to strep throat, and for protecting vulnerable patients receiving chemotherapy or being treated in intensive care units.
Although antibiotic resistance is not a new problem, its scope now constitutes a major threat to human health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at least 2 million Americans fall sick every year with antibiotic-resistant infections—and 23,000 die.
Medical and public health experts agree that addressing antibiotic resistance requires measures that will ensure both the prudent use of existing drugs and a robust pipeline of new drugs. Pew's antibiotic resistance project supports policies that would:
- Spur the creation of new antibiotics by removing the regulatory, economic, and scientific obstacles that impede antibiotic discovery and development.
- Establish stewardship programs to ensure that antibiotics are prescribed only when necessary in human health care settings.
- End the overuse of antibiotics in food animals.
3 personal perspectives
Health experts create national targets to reduce unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions
Analysis shows more than 1 in 3 labels will not fully meet judicious use standards after implementation of FDA policy
On March 1, The Pew Charitable Trusts and the Infectious Diseases Society of America will co-sponsor a briefing on “Innovation and the Fight Against Superbugs.” The event aims to inform congressional staff about efforts to combat antibiotic resistance by key federal agencies, as well as their successes and challenges in advancing antibiotic innovation and stewardship. Read More
A new report from the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) offers valuable insights into regional patterns in the global use of antibiotics in food animals. In its second annual examination of antibiotic use, the OIE for the first time includes data adjusted to account for the size of the various animal populations that might require antibiotics. This approach to interpreting the... Read More