From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : AWARE tool by WHO
Mains level : Anti-microbial resistance
- The WHO has launched a global campaign that urges countries to adopt its new online tool aimed at guiding policy-makers and health workers to use antibiotics safely and more effectively.
The tool, known as ‘AWaRe’, classifies antibiotics into three groups:
- Access — antibiotics used to treat the most common and serious infections
- Watch — antibiotics available at all times in the healthcare system
- Reserve — antibiotics to be used sparingly or preserved and used only as a last resort
- Antimicrobial resistance (AMR or AR) is the ability of a microbe to resist the effects of medication that once could successfully treat the microbe
- The term antibiotic resistance is a subset of AMR, as it applies only to bacteria becoming resistant to antibiotics.
- Antibiotics are medicines used to prevent and treat bacterial infections. Antibiotic resistance occurs when bacteria change in response to the use of these medicines.
- Bacteria, not humans or animals, become antibiotic-resistant.
- These bacteria may infect humans and animals, and the infections they cause are harder to treat than those caused by non-resistant bacteria.
- Antibiotic resistance occurs naturally, but misuse of antibiotics in humans and animals is accelerating the process.
- A growing number of infections – such as pneumonia, tuberculosis, gonorrhoea, and salmonellosis – are becoming harder to treat as the antibiotics used to treat them become less effective.
- It leads to higher medical costs, prolonged hospital stays, and increased mortality.