NEW UNICEF REPORT ON PNEUMONIA AND DIARRHOEA IN CHILDREN DOES NOT ADDRESS ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANCE
4 July 2012
In June, UNICEF released a report entitled “Pneumonia and diarrhoea: tackling the deadliest diseases for the world's poorest children”. Pneumonia and diarrhoea cause almost one third of deaths among children under age 5 worldwide. This translates into more than 2 million lives lost each year. Oral rehydration salts and antibiotics to children with diarrhoea and bacterial pneumonia are two key components in combatting these diseases.
The report from UNICEF calls for better access to vaccines and antibiotics, but in addition to improving access, we believe it is essential to ensure that recommended antibiotics are effective. This requires a global system for surveillance of antibiotic resistance. If resistance is widespread, it will further aggravate this problem – an aspect that is not covered in the report.
Read the article "A framework for global surveillance of antibiotic resistance" by H Grundmann et al: from the ReAct Conference "The Global Need for Effective Antibiotics" held in Uppsala 2010.
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