The White House has revealed its strategy against the growing problem of antibiotic-resistant superbugs.
The problem of superbugs has been discussed widely in the scientific community. Superbugs' emergence is taking humans to a stage where minor infections can become fatal. Researchers also believe that superbugs can possibly kill around 10 million people worldwide by 2050 if it is not checked on time.
The Obama Administration has recently revealed its strategy to address the growing problem of superbugs in the coming five years. A 60-page report suggests that the initiative will require a lot of investments and at the same time the initiative will also need policy changes by a number of health agencies.
The government aims to reduce superbug infections drastically in the coming years. The strategy will include investing in antibiotic drugs and diagnostic tools. The plan is also expected to increase international collaboration via foreign health ministries and the World Health Organization (WHO).
The Obama Administration is also expected to draw plans about excess antibiotic use in hospitals and in animal farms. A previous report suggests that animals are fed a lot of antibiotics to mature earlier and give more meat. However, when the meat from these animals is consumed by humans, they reduce antibiotic resistance.
Hospitals will also be needed to implement plans to intensify infection controls like judiciously washing of hands by doctors, nurses and caregivers; proper sanitizing for hospital equipment and surfaces; and reducing antibiotics use in patients.
The plan will also require doctors with Medicaid and Medicare health plans to report antibiotics prescribing patterns, especially in the case of non-bacterial infections like common colds.
The screening process of people arriving from different countries will also be reviewed.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that about 2 million Americans are infected with superbugs each year, which results in the deaths of about 23,000 patients.
Under the new plan, CDC is expected to reduce infection rates of many widespread diseases. The health agency is expecting to reduce Clostridium difficile infections by 50 percent, carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) infections by 60 percent and reducing Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bloodstream infections by a minimum of 50 percent.
"This kicks everything up to another level, which, given the severity of the threat, is absolutely necessary," says Amanda Jezek of the Infectious Diseases Society of America,
The exact plan to combat superbugs had not been publicly released but a White House official suggests that the government will confirm the plan on Friday, March 27.
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