(MENAFN- Trend News Agency)
High levels of antibiotic resistance in bacteria are causing
life-threatening bloodstream infections, according to the latest
report released by the World Health Organization (WHO) on Friday,
For the first time, the Global Antimicrobial Resistance and Use
Surveillance System (GLASS) report provides analyses of
antimicrobial resistance (AMR) rates in national testing coverage,
AMR trends since 2017, and data on antimicrobial consumption in
humans in 27 countries.
The report shows over 50 percent resistance in bacteria, which
frequently causes bloodstream infections that require treatment
with last-resort antibiotics. Meanwhile, common bacterial
infections are becoming increasingly resistant to treatments. Over
60 percent of Neisseria gonorrhoea isolates, a common sexually
transmitted disease, have shown resistance to the common oral
WHO's Essential Medicines List (EML) divides antibiotics into
three categories: access, watch and reserve. Medicines in the
access group are available at all times as treatments for a wide
range of common infections; the watch group lists antibiotics that
are recommended as first or second choice treatments for a small
number of infections, while the reserve group is for antibiotics
which should only be used as a last resort in the most severe
The report shows that bloodstream infections due to resistant E.
coli, Salmonella and gonorrhoea increased by at least 15 percent
compared to 2017. More research is required to identify how this is
related to increased hospitalizations and antibiotic treatments
during the COVID-19 pandemic, the WHO says.
Also, countries with lower rates of testing, mostly low- and
middle-income countries, are more likely to report significantly
higher AMR rates.
'Antimicrobial resistance undermines modern medicine and puts
millions of lives at risk,' said WHO Director-General Tedros
Adhanom Ghebreyesus. 'To truly understand the extent of the global
threat and mount an effective public health response to AMR, we
must scale up microbiology testing and provide quality-assured data
across all countries, not just wealthier ones.'
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