Posted by Zia H. Shah MD - Twitter: @ZiahShah1
By Fergus Walsh – Medical correspondent
The danger posed by growing resistance to antibiotics should be ranked along with terrorism on a list of threats to the nation, the government’s chief medical officer for England has said.
Professor Dame Sally Davies described it as a “ticking time bomb”.
She warned that routine operations could become deadly in just 20 years if we lose the ability to fight infection.
Dame Sally urged the government to raise the issue during next month’s G8 Summit in London.
Dame Sally said: “If we don’t take action, then we may all be back in an almost 19th Century environment where infections kill us as a result of routine operations. We won’t be able to do a lot of our cancer treatments or organ transplants.”
She said pharmaceutical companies needed to be encouraged to develop new drugs, because the manufacture of antibiotics was not viewed as profitable.
Antimicrobial resistance is a global threat.
It happens when organisms are able to survive medicines aimed to destroy them.
Bacteria can become resistant to antibiotics, viruses to antivirals and parasites to drugs like antimalarials.
The World Health Organiziation says 150,000 deaths a year are caused by multi-drug resistant tuberculosis.