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Giving Compass' Take:
• Sigal Samuel at Vox reports on the detrimental problem of antibiotic resistance and how we’re approaching a post-antibiotic era — a time when our antibiotics are pretty much useless and drug-resistant superbugs can all too easily decimate our health.
• In the US, one person dies every 15 minutes because of drug resistance. What are scientists and researchers doing to stop this? Why are companies not developing new antibiotics?
• Here's how philanthropy can impact antibiotic-resistance.
Every 15 minutes, one person in the US dies because of an infection that antibiotics can no longer treat effectively.
That’s 35,000 deaths a year.
This striking estimate comes from a major new report, released Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), on the urgent problem of antibiotic resistance.
Although the report focuses on the US, this is a global crisis: 700,000 people around the world die of drug-resistant diseases each year. And if we don’t make a radical change now, that could rise to 10 million by 2050.
Drug resistance is what happens when we overuse antibiotics in the treatment of humans, animals, and crops. When a new antibiotic is introduced, it can have great, even life-saving results — for a while. But then the bacteria adapt. Gradually, the antibiotic becomes less effective and we’re left with a disease that we don’t know how to treat.
And it’s not just diseases like tuberculosis. Common problems like STDs and urinary tract infections are also becoming more resistant to treatment. Routine hospital procedures like C-sections and joint replacements could become more dangerous, too, as the risk associated with infection increases. Two of the most urgent current threats are C. difficile (an infection sometimes brought on by antibiotic use) and drug-resistant N. gonorrhoeae (sometimes dubbed “super gonorrhea”).
Read the full article about post-antibiotic era by Sigal Samuel at Vox.