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Researchers Call for Response to Combat Antibiotic-Resistant Pathogens

Sat, 24 May 2014 00:57:39 +0000

iStock/Thinkstock(LONDON) -- Scientists are calling on world leaders to consider the increase in antibiotic-resistant bugs, comparing the threat's severity to that of climate change.

Experts asked for the establishment of a global organization to address the issue during a Thursday meeting in London.

There is a need for a "powerful panel" to oversee data and help implement policies that will keep existing drugs working, according to a report published in the journal Nature.

Researchers Mark Woolhouse and Jeremy Farrar cited the World Health Organization's recent warnings that a "post-antibiotic" world could soon become a reality, adding that resistance to strains of malaria, HIV, and pneumococci have already spread across continents.

"Better surveillance is essential. But it will not provide solutions; many calls to action on antimicrobial resistance have been made over the past 20 years, but there has been too little progress," the pair writes. "The WHO missed the opportunity to provide leadership on what is urgently needed to really make a difference...The attempt must be made — otherwise, the massive health gains made possible by antimicrobial drugs will be lost."

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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