Resistant bacteria cost a lot of life and money, the OECD warns


Antibiotic resistant bacteria not only endanger life but also weigh the health systems: they could to generate up to 3.5 billion dollars of annual expenditure by 2050 in each OECD country, according to a report published on Wednesday, 7 November.

"These bacteria are more expensive than influenza, AIDS, tuberculosis and costs will be even greater if countries fail to solve this problem," Michele Cechini, a public health specialist, told AFP. OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development).

In his view, countries already spend an average of 10% of their health budget for the treatment of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

According to the projections of the report, referring to 33 of the 36 OECD countries, resistant bacteria in 2050 could be destroyed by 2.4 million people in Europe, North America and Australia.

She published a separate study published on Monday in The The Lancet Infections 33,000 deaths due to these bacteria in 2015 in the European Union.

However, they could fight "simple measures" with moderate costs, in line with the OECD: "Promote better hygiene" (by promoting, for example, washing hands), "stopping an overdose of antibiotics" or further generalizing rapid diagnostic tests to determine if the infection is viral (in this case antibiotics are not useful) or bacteria.

According to the OECD, these measures would cost only USD 2 per person per year and prevent three quarters of death.

"Investing in a major public health program involving some of these measures could be offset in one year and would result in savings of $ 4.8 billion a year," says the OECD.

Health authorities starting with the World Health Organization (WHO) regularly warn the risk of overuse of antibiotics, which is resistant to dangerous bacteria. Young children and the elderly are especially at risk.

"In Brazil, Indonesia and Russia, between 40 and 60% of infections are already resistant, compared to an average of 17% in OECD countries, "the latter said.

It is even more worrying that the resistance to antibiotics of the second or third treatment in 2030 will increase by 70% compared to 2005. "These antibiotics are those that should be used as a last resort if there is no other solution.

(With AFP)

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