July 22, 2014 – : Resistant Bugs


Anchor lead:  What’s the status of resistant organisms worldwide? Elizabeth Tracey reports

Across the globe, drug-resistant bacteria and viruses are emerging at an alarming rate, a new report from the World Health Organization warns.  Michael Klag, dean of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, reviews the data.

Klag: The numbers in all in these reports are small but they’re very concerning. For example, e.coli, countries in the African region that reported, had somewhere between a quarter to a third of all isolates are resistant to third generation cephalosporins. And the European region varies from 3 to 43, but substantial effects.  HIV resistance is also worrisome.  :22

Klag warns that pharmaceutical company development of new drugs for infectious diseases is sadly lacking.

Klag: We need to figure out, as we did for vaccines, ways to figure out a market where drug companies can have a return on investment that’s reasonable.  :08

Klag says we can all help by not insisting upon antibiotics when they’re not indicated and finishing those we start.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.