7 Lakh Deaths Per Year Due to Antimicrobial Resistance Worldwide

India is amongst the world’s largest consumers of antibiotics for human health. A recent white paper by Aetna International titled ‘Antibiotic resistance: Toward better stewardship of a precious medical resource’ highlights the need for immediate action to contain the situation. Multiple factors, such as high burden of disease, poor public health infrastructure, rising incomes and the unregulated sale of cheap antibiotics have amplified the crisis of antibiotics resistance in India.

Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) is causing around 7 Lakh deaths worldwide and the death toll may reach 1 crore per annum by 2050.

A 12-country survey by the World Health Organisation in 2015 demonstrates that at least 75 percent of respondents from four countries including India reported taking an antibiotic within the last six months, compared with just 35 percent of those from Barbados. As per a Lancet report, resistant infections are more expensive to treat and patients infected with resistant strains of bacteria are more likely to require longer hospitalisation. In the US alone, over 2million people suffer from illness due to drug resistant bacteria every year. This costs the United States an additional Rs.1,30,000 Crores(20 billion US dollars) in healthcare spends. In BRICS countries, antibiotic consumption is expected to …

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