Washington, DC -
06/16/2011 - The Pew Campaign on Human Health and Industrial Farming (HHIF) today applauded U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) for introducing S. 1211, the Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act of 2011 (PAMTA). The bill amends the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to withdraw seven classes of antibiotics critical for treating infections in humans from use on industrial farms unless animals or herds are sick with disease.
“The emergence of drug-resistant superbugs is a human health problem that affects us all,” said Laura Rogers, HHIF’s project director. “We commend Senator Feinstein, Senator Collins, Senator Reed and Senator Boxer for their bipartisan collaboration to ensure that our antibiotics will work for us when we need them most.”
The American Medical Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, World Health Organization and other leading medical groups all warn that the overuse and misuse of antibiotics in food animal production presents a serious and growing threat to human health because it creates new strains of dangerous, drug-resistant bacteria. As antibiotics lose their effectiveness, infections will become more difficult to treat, more costly and increasingly deadly.
According to a task force led by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the National Institutes of Health, antibiotic-resistant bacteria could render diseases like pneumonia, meningitis and tuberculosis untreatable.