“Antibiotic Overuse: Is it About to Kill Us ?”
We have been warned by the American Medical Association, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the World Health Organization that if we don’t significantly reduce antibiotic use in people and agriculture, we will soon live in a world where these drugs no longer work. This conclusion has been unfolding for nearly a century. In short, experts say that overuse of antibiotics is killing us. The scenario of the development of antibiotic resistance is a familiar one. Faced with routine antibiotic treatments, bacteria can become resistant and, as a consequence, these superbugs proliferate, eventually undermining the effectiveness of drugs developed to target them. According to recent figures from the CDC, each year antibiotic resistant bacteria account for at least 2 million serious infections, 23,000 deaths, and $20-35 billion in healthcare costs in this country. We must cut back on these drugs, and we need to find new ones to combat resistant germs.