Drugs Fail Due To Resistant Bacteria

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Health officials are concerned about the 600 cases of drug failure due to resistant bacteria, which have been reported.

The widespread use of antibiotics to treat common illnesses may become a threat to the Western world. Bacteria are becoming resistant to these drugs which make the treatment process ineffective.

The Chief Medical Officer in the UK, Dame Sally Davies, has called on hospital to improve the hygiene in the facilities as this will prevent resistant bacteria from spreading. She has also put out an urgent appeal to the medical fraternity to reduce the number of antibiotics that are currently being prescribed.

Public Health England has stated an increase in a particular group of infections which have a resistance to antibiotics that are normally given to patients as a last resort. This is done when nothing else works. There are patients in this situation who may still respond to other drugs, however there may not be sufficient time to find the most suitable treatment.

The situation in London and Manchester, where NHS trusts have each reported around 100 cases of drug resistance in the past five years, are on the top of the list of concern. It has become imperative for medical staff to be suitably trained in the risks that exist when prescribing antibiotics that are not necessary. They should also be made aware of the importance of improving hygiene as a preventative measure.

There are certain high-risk countries that medical staff should be aware of as patients from these countries may pose an increased risk. The high risk countries include China, Greece, Italy, Pakistan, the United States, Bangladesh, Cyprus, India, Malta, Turkey, all the North African and Middle East countries.

A window of opportunity has been opened for Britain and according, to the PHE’s medical director, it should be used to address this health threat and prevent problems by limiting the impact of these organisms by acting quickly.

Image credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture

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