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Govt Needs to do More to Tackle Rising Sale of Unapproved Antibiotics

In India, the sale of antibiotics requiring the tightest control and regulation is rising the fastest, warn the researchers. The correspondence published in The Lancet Global Health highlights serious hurdles for controlling antimicrobial resistance in the country. In June 2017, the World Health Organization (WHO) adopted a new classification for antibiotics, to combat rising antimicrobial resistance and preserve the effectiveness of antibiotics that are a ‘last resort’. The new model comprised three categories: ‘Key Access’ antibiotics that should be widely available, ‘Watch Group’ that includes critically important antimicrobials which should only be used for certain infections, and ‘Reserve Group’ antibiotics for severe circumstances when all alternatives have failed.

Professor Allyson Pollock, Director of the Institute of Health and Society at Newcastle University, said: “In India, rational use of antibiotics is imperative to limit antimicrobial resistance.  It is of concern that sales of irrational and unsafe combinations are increasing and many have never been approved by the government. There are many calls from within the country for a new medicines Act and effective implementation of regulation to ensure rational medicine prescribing and use.”

Dr. Patricia McGettigan from Queen Mary University of London said: “In India, total sales of antibiotics are increasing, …

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