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Report: Doctors putting everyone at risk by over-prescribing antibiotics

doctor-measuring-blood-pressureNIT – A report released this week says that US hospitals are putting patients at risk by over-prescribing antibiotics, and may even be creating “super-resistant infections” that could be untreatable and lead to countless deaths.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the problems shapes up this way: More than half of all hospital patients receive an antibiotic and doctors in some hospitals prescribed 3 times as many antibiotics as doctors in other hospitals.  The CDC said that reducing the use of high-risk antibiotics by 30% can lower deadly diarrhea infections by 26%.

Antibiotics save lives, the CDC said, but poor prescribing practices are putting patients at unnecessary risk for preventable allergic reactions, super-resistant infections, and deadly diarrhea. Errors in prescribing decisions also contribute to antibiotic resistance, making these drugs less likely to work in the future.

President Barack Obama earmarked $30 million every year for the next five years for detecting, preventing and fighting “superbug” infections.

In February, the Department of Health and Human Services announced that over the next five years the United States plans to work with at least 30 partner countries (containing at least 4 billion people) to prevent, detect and effectively respond to infectious disease threats, whether naturally occurring or caused by accidental or intentional releases of dangerous pathogens.

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