Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR)

Antibiotics are the foundation of our modern healthcare system. Since the mid-1940s, antibiotics have revolutionized modern healthcare, making organ transplantations, chemotherapy, and surgery possible by effectively fighting off infections. It’s difficult to imagine a world without them.

 

More than seventy years later, the use of antibiotics in healthcare are in serious jeopardy, owing to the emergence and spread of superbugs - bacteria that become resistant to available and formerly effective antibiotics used to treat infections. Currently, AMR is quickly becoming one of the biggest threats to global health, food security and development - causing many common infections such as pneumonia, to become resistant to antibiotics, resulting in long-term illnesses, higher medical costs, and an increase in death rates globally.

Three main causes of AMR

Human misuse and overuse - We must use antibiotics only when therapeutically indicated. When antibiotics are prescribed, it is important to take them exactly as prescribed, and never share them with others. We should not take antibiotics without prescription. Our healthcare practitioners should have the right expertise and tools to judge if we need antibiotics or not.

Currently 50% of antibiotic prescriptions in hospitals are unnecessary, given for no documented reason. As well, 45% of antibiotics prescriptions from physicians are for conditions where antibiotics cannot help - and that’s just in healthcare.

 

Agricultural misuse - Today there are more than 7 billion people living on our planet. Ongoing prosperity and population growth drive the increasing demand for animal proteins. This puts an enormous responsibility on the food producing industry to provide a large volume of food at competitive prices. To be able to survive, farmers have transitioned to more intensive agricultural production and often use low doses of antibiotics (non-therapeutic doses) to increase weight gain in animals in many parts of the world. This unnecessary antibiotic use in the food producing industry adds to the emergence of resistant bacteria. We come in contact with these bacteria via the food chain.

 

Pharmaceutical pollution - Antibiotics must be produced responsibly and sustainably.  Today, 80-90% of drug production occurs in India and China. Many manufacturers in these countries illegally and irresponsibly dump between 69-137 Mega tonne (MT) of antimicrobial active compounds into our precious rivers and waterways every single day.  These highly concentrated antibiotics (in some cases 10,000 times higher than the concentrations present in clean water) enter the food chain, thereby significantly accelerating the emergence of antibiotic resistance.

As a result of globalization, this is no longer a localized issue. Antibiotics released in the environment during the manufacturing process, create resistant bacteria that eventually travel the globe. Some drug-resistant bacteria first found in India in 2014 have since been found in more than 70 other countries.

A worldwide problem

Source: AMR Review

IIn February 2017 the World Health Organization (WHO) issued a list of 12 families of bacteria that have become resistant to antibiotics. Every year, these bacteria are causing more than 700,000 deaths around the world, claiming over 50,000 deaths in the EU and US alone. At the current pace, an estimated ten million people worldwide are expected to die from resistant bacteria every year, costing the global economy 100 trillion USD by 2050.

 

In September 2017,  the WHO published a report showing a serious lack of new antibiotics under development, confirming the world is currently running out of effective antibiotics. We need to act now and work together to prevent an era in which effective antibiotics are no longer available to us.

 

This is why we must take, use and make antibiotics responsibly.

 

Read about our position on AMR here.

 

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Antibiotics are the foundation of our modern healthcare system. Since the mid-1940s, antibiotics have revolutionized modern healthcare, making organ transplantations, chemotherapy, and surgery possible by effectively fighting off infections. It’s hard to imagine a world without them.

 

More than seventy years later, these applications are in serious jeopardy due to the emergence and spread of Superbugs - bacteria that become resistant to available and formerly effective antibiotics used to treat infections. Currently, AMR is quickly turning into the biggest threat to global health, food security and development - causing many common infections, such as pneumonia, to become resistant to antibiotics, resulting in long-term illnesses, higher medical costs, and an increase in death rates globally.

Human misuse and overuse - We must only use antibiotics when therapeutically indicated. When antibiotics are prescribed, it is important to take them exactly as prescribed and never share them with others. We should not take antibiotics without prescription. Our healthcare practitioners should have the right expertise and tools to judge if we need antibiotics or not.

Today, 50% of antibiotic prescriptions in hospitals are unnecessary, they are given for no documented reason.

45% of antibiotics prescriptions in doctor’s offices are for conditions where antibiotics cannot help. And that’s just in healthcare.

 

Agricultural misuse - Today there are more than 7 billion people living on this world. Ever ongoing prosperity and population growth drive the increasing demand for animal proteins. This puts an enormous responsibility on the food producing industry to provide the large volume of food at competitive prices. To be able to survive, farmers have transitioned to intensive agriculture and often use low doses of antibiotics (non-therapeutic doses) to increase weight gain in animals in most parts of the world. This unnecessary antibiotic use in the food producing industry adds to the emergence of resistant bacteria. We humans come in touch with these bacteria via the food chain.

 

Pharmaceutical pollution - Antibiotics must be produced responsibly and in the most sustainable way possible. Today, 80-90% of drug production is outsourced to India and China. Manufacturers in these countries illegally and irresponsibly dump 69-137 Mega tonne (MT) of antimicrobial active compounds into our precious rivers and waterways every single day.  These highly concentrated antibiotics (in some cases 10,000 times higher than the concentrations present in clean water) enter the food chain, thereby significantly accelerating the emergence of antibiotic resistance.

Due to globalization, this is no longer a localized problem. Antibiotics released in the environment during the manufacturing process, create resistant bacteria that eventually travel the world. Some drug-resistant bacteria first found in India in 2014 have since been found in more than 70 countries around the world.

In February 2017 the World Health Organization (WHO) issued a list of 12 families of bacteria that have become resistant to antibiotics. Every year, these bacteria are causing more than 700,000 deaths around the world, and claiming over 50,000 deaths in the EU and US alone. At the current pace, an estimated ten million people worldwide are expected to die from resistant bacteria every year, costing the economy 100 trillion USD by 2050.

 

On the 20th of September 2017 the WHO published a report showing a serious lack of new antibiotics under development, confirming the world is currently running out of effective antibiotics. The time is now that we need to act and work together to prevent the coming of an era in which effective antibiotics are no longer available to us.

 

This is why we must take, use and make antibiotics responsibly.

 

Read about our position on AMR here.

Antibiotics are the foundation of our modern healthcare system. Since the mid-1940s, antibiotics have revolutionized modern healthcare, making organ transplantations, chemotherapy, and surgery possible by effectively fighting off infections. It’s hard to imagine a world without them.

 

More than seventy years later, these applications are in serious jeopardy due to the emergence and spread of so called ‘Superbugs’ - bacteria that become resistant to available and formerly effective antibiotics used to treat infections. Currently, antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is quickly turning into the biggest threat to global health, food security and development - causing many common infections, such as pneumonia, to become resistant to antibiotics that are used to treat them, resulting in long-term illnesses, higher medical costs, and an increase in death rates globally.

Human misuse and overuse - We must only use antibiotics when therapeutically indicated. When antibiotics are prescribed, it is important to take them exactly as prescribed and never share them with others. We should not take antibiotics without prescription. Our healthcare practitioners should have the right expertise and tools to judge if we need antibiotics or not.

Today, 50% of antibiotic prescriptions in hospitals are unnecessary, they are given for no documented reason.

45% of antibiotics prescriptions in doctor’s offices are for conditions where antibiotics cannot help. And that’s just in healthcare.

 

Agricultural misuse - Today there are more than 7 billion people living on this world. Ever ongoing prosperity and population growth drive the increasing demand for animal proteins. This puts an enormous responsibility on the food producing industry to provide the large volume of food at competitive prices. To be able to survive, farmers have transitioned to intensive agriculture and often use low doses of antibiotics (non-therapeutic doses) to increase weight gain in animals in most parts of the world. This unnecessary antibiotic use in the food producing industry provides the ideal breeding ground for resistant bacteria. We humans come in touch with these bacteria via the food chain.

 

Pharmaceutical pollution - Antibiotics must be produced responsibly and in the most sustainable way possible. Today, 80-90 percent of drug production is outsourced to India and China. Manufacturers in these countries illegally and irresponsibly dump 69-137 Mega tonne (MT) of antimicrobial active compounds into our precious rivers and waterways every single day.  These highly concentrated antibiotics (in some cases 10,000 times higher than the concentrations present in clean water) enter the food chain, thereby significantly accelerating the emergence of antibiotic resistance.

Due to globalization, this is no longer a localized problem. Antibiotics released in the environment during the manufacturing process, create resistant bacteria that eventually travel the world. Some drug-resistant bacteria first found in India in 2014 have since been found in more than 70 countries around the world.

In February 2017 the World Health Organization (WHO) issued a list of 12 families of bacteria that have become resistant to antibiotics. Every year, these bacteria are causing more than 700,000 deaths around the world, and claiming over 50,000 deaths in the EU and US alone. At the current pace, an estimated ten million people worldwide are expected to die from resistant bacteria every year, costing the economy 100 trillion USD by 2050.

 

On the 20th of September 2017 the WHO published a report showing a serious lack of new antibiotics under development, confirming the world is currently running out of effective antibiotics. The time is now that we need to act and work together to prevent the coming of an era in which effective antibiotics are no longer available to us.

 

This is why we must take, use and make antibiotics responsibly.

 

Read about our position on AMR here.