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Various educational materials are available to raise awareness of antibacterial resistance and improve their use. | Courtesy WHO
on October 24, 2017

Understanding antibiotic use, risks of resistance

From poultry farm to dispensary, Antibiotic Awareness Week seeks to raise understanding of antibiotic use and the risks of resistance.

World Antibiotic Awareness Week takes place November 13-19 this year to raise awareness of resistance and encourage best practice across sectors.

Read the entire report about World Antibiotic Awareness Week exclusively in the November issue of Poultry International.

Despite fears over resistance first emerging decades ago, the topic has, more recently, risen up many agendas, and become recognized as a major threat to health, prosperity and even security. There are estimates that US$40 billion is being sought over the next 10 years to tackle the problem. 

2017 is the third year that World Antibiotic Awareness Week is taking place, focusing on human health care, agriculture and the environment, and is part of the WHO global action plan, “Antibiotics: handle with care.”

Through a variety of initiatives across sectors, the week aims to improve awareness and understanding of antimicrobial resistance, strengthen surveillance and research, reduce infection incidence, optimize medicine use and ensure sustainable investment in counteracting resistance.

While drug-resistant infections kill approximately 700,000 people a year, by 2050 this could rise to 10 million – more than the projected 8.2 million deaths from cancer – and tightening regulations on antibiotics will not be enough to solve the resistance problem.

No matter how strict rules may be, if not monitored or properly implemented, they will have little effect. What is essential is education to ensure that prescribers and users better understand how antibiotics should be used. Change is needed at grassroots level, and, in some cases, this may mean greater access to and use of antibiotics.

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Read the full article.

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