Monday, November 26, 2012

Antibiotic Resistance: Why Is This a Big Deal?
Here is a nice article published online in American Medical News that provides a very nice overview of the problem of antibiotic resistance. The article also links to a consensus statement by 26 major health groups (including the CDC, Infectious Diseases Society of America and American Academy of Pediatrics, to name a few) that outlines the nature of the problem and commits to begin combatting the issue more aggressively, in a coordinated fashion, via promoting improved utilization of antibiotics, calling for new antibiotics to treat resistant infections and raising awareness about this issue in general. This is an excellent "call to arms" that both raises awareness about this issue and commits to a coordinated approach to addressing it.

Notably missing from the list of organizations that signed this statement, however, are major agricultural groups; as previously discussed, the majority of antibiotics are used in animal husbandry. The problem of antibiotic resistance truly crosses disciplines, and solutions to this issue will accordingly need to involve professionals across diverse fields such as agriculture, medicine, public health, economics, sociology, et cetera (the previously mentioned "One Health" approach to addressing issues with global impact).

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