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One In Three People Used Antibiotics Without Prescription: New WHO Study Of Eastern And Former Soviet Member States

Unmonitored antibiotic use threatens the global battle against antimicrobial resistance.

a new survey One-third of citizens of 14 WHO Member States in the Balkans, Caucasus and Central Asia said that one-third of respondents asked said their last course of antibiotics was obtained by prescription. discovered.

This is at least three times the figure reported in a similar survey of 30 member states of the European Union and the European Economic Area. Recent research The WHO’s Regional Office for Europe said in a report on the findings of its findings published Monday that it had reported the number of citizens by the European Commission.

The findings were part of a broader survey of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) knowledge, attitudes and behaviors conducted for the first time in the eastern part of the WHO European Region, including the Caucasus and Central Asia.

Countries surveyed include Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Republic of Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkiye and Uzbekistan.

The findings highlight a large gap that exists both globally and within WHO’s vast European region regarding the use of antibiotics and perceptions of increasing antimicrobial resistance to common agents.

WHO’s European Region includes 53 Member States, representing a wide range of economic development levels and a broader reflection of the world’s development gaps. This includes all his EU/EEA member states as well as members of the former USSR and other former Eastern Bloc countries that are not EU member states.

Preliminary findings show that one in three respondents to a WHO survey reported that they used leftover antibiotics from a previous prescription in their last course of antibiotics, or obtained them from pharmacies without a prescription. said he did.

Additionally, across participating countries, 50% of those surveyed reported using antibiotics in the last year, more than double the value reported in EU/EEA countries over the same period.

Among AMR hotspots worldwide, Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia

All-age MRSA deaths attributed to AMR.

At least 1.27 million deaths per year are directly attributable to Superbug resistance to common antibiotics, according to the WHO. Global AMR Estimates It was released earlier this year by the Seattle-based Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) and partners in the Global Antimicrobial Resistance (GRAM) Project.

Methicillin resistance was the world’s deadliest pathogen-drug combination Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), which caused more than 100,000 deaths attributed to AMR in 2019, according to an IHME report. At the GBD superregional level, the number of all-age MRSA deaths attributed to AMR is the highest in the Southeast Asia, East Asia, and Oceania superregions and lowest in the Central Europe, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia superregions. region.

However, all-age MRSA mortality attributed to AMR was greatest in the Southeast Asia, East Asia, and Oceania superregions, and proportionately lowest in the Central Europe, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia superregions in the IHME study. turned out to be. Regions – Regions with more stable access to healthcare. Still, about 35,000 people have died from her AMR-related infections in her EU/EEA region, which represents Europe’s most developed economy, according to WHO.

A slow tsunami on the horizon

WHO press technical briefing on 11 July 2022.

“When antibiotics are used excessively, for a long time, or when they become unnecessary, bacteria can become resistant,” says Danilo Lo, WHO European Regional Advisor on Managing Antimicrobial Resistance. Dr. Fo Wong said. “Without collective action, we see a future where treatable diseases such as urinary tract infections become incurable again, and procedures such as surgery and chemotherapy are too risky to be carried out.”

A survey of 61% of respondents also did not know that antibiotics do not work against viruses, but more than half erroneously believed that they worked against colds. % erroneously believed that antibiotics killed viruses.

However, two-thirds of respondents say they understand that unnecessary use of antibiotics makes them ineffective.

“Antibiotics cannot cure the common cold. The common cold is caused by a virus that is resistant to antibiotics,” emphasized Dr. “Antibiotics won’t help you, but their use can lead to the development of antibiotic resistance, which can be a problem for you or someone else.

Dr. Hans Kluge, WHO’s Regional Director for Europe, called AMR “a tsunami slowly building up on the horizon.” We can take steps to ensure that people are informed about their medicines. ”

See this link for more information World Antimicrobial Awareness Week Event. Click here for details WHO resources and Quadripartite Joint Campaign – Including global institutions dealing with animal health, agriculture and the environment.

Image credit: Emily Brown, Healthdata.org.

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