Friday, January 25, 2013

Rise of superbugs threatens antibiotic crisis

An extraordinary scene plays out in hospitals across Britain that is a harbinger of crisis ahead. Patients brought in for routine operations pick up infections that until recent times seemed trivial. Now they can be killers. Even the most modern, and powerful, antibiotics can no longer save them.

The story of the superbug MRSA raised awareness of the growing uselessness of antibiotics, but that has been brought largely under control through better hygiene, at least in the UK.

The rise of other lethal drug-resistant organisms, including salmonella, TB, and E coli, continues, and the chief medical officer, Dame Sally Davies, warned MPs this week the threat must be listed on the government's National Register of Civil Emergencies.