Antibiotics are one of the greatest success stories in modern medicine. Although we associate them with treating acute infections, these drugs underpin much of health care—from routine surgical procedures to organ transplants and cancer treatment. Unfortunately, the history of antibiotics is a race between innovation and resistance. As innovative science furnishes novel drugs, bacterial evolution can quickly render them ineffective.

Pew addresses the growing public health challenge of multidrug-resistant infections by supporting policies that encourage the development of antibiotics to treat life-threatening illnesses and that preserve the effectiveness of existing antibiotics by ensuring that they are used appropriately.

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Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria is a Growing Threat, 2023

Where superbugs come from and what can be done to combat them

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Antibiotic-resistant bacteria pose an urgent and growing public health threat. Common bacteria, such as those that cause urinary tract infections and sexually transmitted infections, are becoming increasingly difficult to treat. Without effective antibiotics, even simple infections could become deadly, making medical procedures like surgery, chemotherapy, and dialysis too dangerous.

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