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What if antibiotics stop working?

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26 January 2012

ReAct congratulates the organisers of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland for including an open discussion on the future of antibiotics at their annual event this year. The session ‘What if All Known Antibiotics Lost Their Effectiveness?’, to be held on 27 January 2012, is a timely recognition of the risk that bacterial resistance to antibiotics poses to the future of human health.

“There is an urgent need to make the impact of antibiotic resistance and the urgent need for research and development of new antibiotics more visible to policy makers and the public,’ says Prof. Otto Cars, Executive Director of ReAct. “However, it is essential that any new antibiotics are made globally accessible and affordable”, he adds.


On the WEF blog presenting one of the Global Risks 2012: “What if antibiotics stopped working?”, The Risk Response Network within World Economic Forum invites to a discussion about a world without antibiotics. Referrals are made to facts and figures from Prof. Otto Cars presentation (PDF, 9MB) at the ReAct high-level meeting “Collaboration for Innovation – The Urgent Need for New Antibiotics” held in Brussels on May 23rd 2011 and the ReAct Factsheet (PDF) on the Economic Costs of Antibiotic Resistance.

The presentation on the WEF blog is also cited on the Forbes Magazine web site; What If Antibiotics Stop Working? Cataclysm.

Welcoming the WEF initiative to take a long-term view and focus on antibiotic resistance at a time when a grave economic crises threaten the world economy, ReAct calls upon world leaders to start framing policies to ensure effectiveness of and availability to antibiotics for future generations.

ReAct WEF Press Release:

“Loss of antibiotic efficacy poses global risk” (PDF).

Interview with Otto Cars:

“What if we lost the use of antibiotics?”

More WEF in the media:

“Are Doctors Over-Prescribing Medications?” Henry Schein CEO Stanley Bergman on the state of global health care and the over-prescription of antibiotics around the world.

“J&J’s Stoffels Says ‘Open Innovation’ is the R&D Answer” The Wall Street Journal health blog.