European Antibiotic Awareness Day 2013: EU steps up its fight against drug-resistant bacteria
A survey published by the European Commission today reveals a decrease in antibiotic use in humans since 2009 and growing public awareness that antibiotics do not kill viruses. However, this positive news is overshadowed by data released in parallel by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) showing a marked increase in Europe of multi-drug resistant Gram-negative bacteria resistant to the carbapenems – last-line antibiotics used to treat healthcare associated infections.
European Commissioner for Health, Mr Tonio Borg said: "I am deeply concerned about the fact that antibiotics, which have allowed us to treat previously deadly bacterial infections and save many lives, are now becoming less and less effective. I cannot stress enough how seriously the Commission takes the challenge posed by antimicrobial resistance."
European Commissioner for Research and Innovation, Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, added: "Research and innovation are essential if we are to turn the tide against antimicrobial resistance. These new projects will add to the excellent work on-going to develop new drugs and treatments."