Antibiotic resistance rapidly spreading around the world
These resistant bacteria can lead to severe infections and mortality in the long term
Many of the most powerful antibiotics are extremely expensive and even toxic, and the team behind the study said that the practice of using multiple drugs at once to prevent resistance may not be working. The World Health Organization (WHO) has long warned of antibiotic overuse sparking new strains of killer, drug-resistant bacteria.
Speaking about this, Padma Shri Awardee, Dr KK Aggarwal, President, HCFI, said, "Antibiotics are different from all other classes of drugs in a very important way: the more a person uses them, the less effective they can become. For a country like India, where over-prescription and misuse of antibiotics is rampant, it is only a matter of time before the resistant bacteria win. Several of these medicines can be obtained without a prescription. What further complicates the problem is inequalities in access to medicine and poor sanitation services. And when farmers use antibiotics to speed the growth of chickens and other livestock, drug-resistant germs find new ways to enter the environment."
In 2017, the WHO classified antibiotics into three groups to address these challenges. The body also issued guidance for how each class of drugs should be used to treat 21 of the most common infections.
Adding further, Dr Aggarwal, who is also the Vice President of CMAAO, said, "Doctors as well as patients should be aware of and advocate judicious use of antibiotics. Over-prescription and self-prescription, both, need to be checked. One of the biggest reasons for the misuse of antibiotics is buying them over-the-counter without consultation with a doctor. Before prescribing antibiotics, always ask yourself: Is it necessary? What is the most effective antibiotic? What is the most affordable antibiotic? What is the most effective dose? What is the most effective duration for which the antibiotic should be administered?"
The 25th MTNL Perfect Health Mela 2018 will be a platform to discuss some of these topics apart from other health-related subjects. The event will be held from the 24th to 28th of October at the Talkatora Indoor Stadium, New Delhi.
Some HCFI tips to combat antibiotic resistance.
• Practice rational use of drugs antibiotics
• Use when needed and according to guidelines
• Avoid broad spectrum antibiotics without appropriate diagnosis
• Prevent infections with the use of vaccination and by improving basic hygiene including hand hygiene and infection control techniques and sanitation in health care settings as well as in the community
• Farmers and food industry must stop using antibiotics routinely to promote growth and prevent disease in healthy animals to prevent the spread of antibiotic resistance.
Dr K K Aggarwal