WHO uncovers big national variations in antibiotics consumption

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Consumption of antibiotics in this category ranged from less than 20 per cent of total antibiotic consumption in some countries to more than 50 per cent in others. Besides focusing on awareness about the consequences of irrational use of antibiotics, greater investment is required on promotion of health and public health infrastructure to minimise the need for antibiotics use. This may indicate that some countries may not have access to these drugs that are necessary for treatment of complicated multidrug-resistant infections.

At a press launch of this year's World Antibiotics Awareness Week (WAAW) in Accra yesterday, the PSGH also cautioned against the purchase of antibiotics from unqualified health workers.

Currently, the East Asian country is also marking World Antibiotic Awareness Week with various events nationwide.

We came up with the idea of an amnesty about three years ago.

Additionally, the National Pork Board continues its participation and collaboration with the CDC's newly developed Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Challenge (#AMRChallenge). Improving the way healthcare professionals prescribe antibiotics, and the way patients use antibiotics, will help keep Hoosiers healthy, prevent fight antibiotic resistance, and ensure that these life saving medications will be available for future generations. And as a result of infection with drug-resistant bacteria an estimated 700,000 people die each year worldwide. That's more than the current number of deaths from cancer.

Anti-microbial resistance occurs when bacteria are no longer affected by the antibiotics they were previously susceptible to or when micro-organisms such as bacteria, viruses and some parasites stop the antimicrobials from working against them.

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.

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"Laboratories and researchers have a critical role to play in identifying resistant bacteria and contributing to the global picture so the world can take appropriate action".

Antibiotics are a precious resource that are fundamental to the efficacy of cancer medicine, routine but life-saving operations such as caesarean sections and other modern medical procedures such as hip replacements.

What can be done about antibiotic resistance?

It's not people that become antibiotic resistant, bacteria do, and these resistant "superbugs" establish themselves after the "weaker" bacteria are cleared out by antibiotics.

"The over-consumption and under-consumption of antibiotics are the major causes of antimicrobial resistance", pointed out Suzanne Hill, head of the unit of essential medicines at World Health Organization, in a press release.

Don't buy antibiotics over the internet or overseas to stockpile them back home. For FAO, the emphasis is on promoting good farming and biosecurity practices aimed at preventing infection in livestock, aquaculture, and crop production. Don't take any medicine, especially antibiotics, unless you really need them.

"Human, animal and environment health are all equally responsible for the correct use of antimicrobials and to avert the threat of antimicrobial resistance", said Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO Regional Director for Europe.

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