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Less use of antibiotics reduces bacterial resistance

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A study shows that reducing the consumption of antibiotics helps reduce the resistance of bacteria. Photo EFE

The countries that have reduced their consumption of antibiotics in animals and humans have registered a decrease in resistance of the bacterias to said drugss, revealed this Wednesday, February 21, 2024, a joint report by several European agencies.

The study by the European Center for Disease Control (ECDC), the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) focuses on treatment of bacteria E. coli.

The analysis found that, according to reduced antibiotic consumption in Europe between 2014 and 2021 –fell by up to 44% in livestock – the E. coli bacteria became less resistant to these drugsboth in animals and humans.

This demonstrates that worrying trends in the phenomenon known as antimicrobial resistance (AMR) can be reversed with appropriate measures and policies, the agencies noted in their statement.

“It is imperative to increase efforts to reduce unnecessary consumption of antibiotics to address the public health threat posed by antimicrobial resistance,†said ECDC Director Andrea Hammon.

Strengthen immunization and infection prevention problems

The head of the Stockholm-based agency also called for strengthening immunization and infection prevention programs, as well as control practices both at the community level and in health centers to further reduce the need for antibiotics. .

On the other hand, the report also indicated that the use of a certain and important group of antibiotics in humans is associated with the resistance of E. coli in humans to these antibiotics.

Finally, antimicrobial resistance in humans could be related to resistance in food animals, as demonstrated by the examples of the bacteria Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli.

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The statement recalled that antimicrobial resistance is a serious threat to human and animal health.

It is estimated that it is responsible for more than 35,000 deaths each year in the states of the European Union (EU) plus Norway and Iceland, while it has an approximate cost of 11.7 billion euros annually for the health systems of said countries. EFE

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