Without urgent action, as many as 10 million people each year could die as a result of AMR. To stop the spread of drug-resistant illness and disease, a new approach is desperately needed.
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a global threat to human health, killing 1.2 million people in 2019 alone.
To stop the spread of drug-resistant illness and disease, a new approach is desperately needed.
What is AMR?
Antibiotics and other antimicrobial drugs (such as antiviral and antiparasitic drugs) are vital to preventing and treating illnesses, disease and infections, and making surgeries and cancer treatments safer.
But overuse and misuse of antimicrobials are causing many of these drugs to become ineffective over time. Bacteria, viruses, parasites, or fungi gradually adapt and stop responding to medicines, meaning infections become increasingly difficult, or even impossible, to treat.
Microorganisms which become resistant to multiple drugs - referred to as ‘superbugs’ - are becoming increasingly common.
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Why is more research needed?
The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared AMR one of the top ten public health threats facing humanity.
Without an urgent response, many common infections will become untreatable and routine medical procedures will become life-threatening.
AMR is threatening the treatment of bacterial infections like sepsis, urinary tract infections (UTIs), and some sexually transmitted infections (STIs). And levels of drug-resistant HIV (HIVDR) are growing, especially among children in sub-Saharan Africa.
AMR is a complex problem that needs a multifaceted response. More investment in research, and in the development of new antimicrobial drugs, is urgently needed.
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