WASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE) – A group of more than 150 medical students from 22 states today called on Congress to do Pioneer Antimicrobial Subscription Act to Stop Rising Resistance (PASTEUR) a priority. In a letter to members of Congress, students share their first-hand view of the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) among their patients, and the alarming role AMR plays in fighting infectious diseases and preparing for future pandemics.
Students write: “In a study of 99 patients infected with COVID-19, bacterial cultures revealed infections of difficult-to-treat superbacteria, including A. baumannii, K. pneumoniae, and A. flavus. In addition, a retrospective study of 191 patients found that 50% of patients who died from COVID-19 had acquired a secondary bacterial infection in the last days of their lives. Additionally, experts, including Dr.Anthony Fauci, estimated that the majority of deaths during the 1918-1919 pandemic were due to secondary bacterial infections.
“There is clearly a market failure for newer antimicrobials. Companies develop and manufacture high-value antimicrobial drugs, but as healthcare professionals we are learning that these drugs should be reserved for the patients who need them most. In addition, there are gaps in the system regarding the appropriate use of antimicrobials, or stewardship, which contributes to resistance in human care and agriculture. In the long run, this is a system that will not support the strong infrastructure we need to meet the needs of our patients. “
“The COVID-19 pandemic has made all Americans aware of the vital role our healthcare workers play,” said Ken Thorpe from Partnership to fight infectious diseases Advisory board. “This group represents the future of healthcare in our country, and their observations and calls to action to ensure they are able to care for their patients for years to come should not go unnoticed. Antimicrobial resistance is a threat to all of us, and now is the time to prepare for it. ”
the Partnership to fight infectious diseases is a group of patients, providers, community organizations, academic researchers, business groups and infectious disease workers and experts who strive to raise awareness of the threats posed by infectious diseases, as well as propose solutions to ensure future preparedness for a pandemic.