Reducing Antimicrobial Resistance

Following our previous post about World Antibiotic Awareness Week, we continue on the same theme with news about some of the latest research on the subject that highlights the significance of hand hygiene.

Last week the OECD (the international Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) published a report that stated up to 2.4 million people could die in Europe, North America and Australia between 2015 and 2050 as a result of superbug infections unless more is done to prevent antibiotic resistance. The report suggests that three quarters of these deaths could be prevented by spending just $2 (approx £1.50) per person, per year on simple measures such as better hand hygiene.  This small investment would not just save those lives but would also save money in the long run.

World Antibiotic Awareness Week

The discovery of penicillin and subsequent generations of antibiotics has been heralded as one of the biggest medical discoveries in history. Yet shortly after his discovery of penicillin in 1928, Dr Alexander Fleming warned of the dangers of resistance, and this fear has been proven to be accurate. Within a few years of the introduction of each new class of antibiotics, resistance was detected, helping drive the need for development of the next blockbuster antibiotic.

The pace of introducing new antibiotics has slowed to a crawl, but within the last decade, bacterial resistance to antibiotics appears to have grown more rapidly, leading to concerns about the “end of the antibiotic era” being on the horizon.

World Antibiotic Awareness Week takes place from 12-18 November.  Diversey has published a short report on the “Implications of the Growing Antibiotic Resistance in Patient Care”, authored by Peter Teska, Infection Prevention Application Expert, and Jim Gauthier, Senior Clinical Advisor, at the company. This explains more about the subject and suggests some potential solutions to reduce the risks of resistance.