The 'First Multicentric Point Prevalence Survey of Antibiotic Use at 20 NAC-NET Sites India 2021-22' reveals alarming statistics on antibiotic use in India.
Over 70% of patients in tertiary-care hospitals across 15 States and two Union Territories were prescribed antibiotics.
More than 50% of the prescribed antibiotics have the potential to cause antimicrobial resistance (AMR).
55% of the surveyed patients were prescribed antibiotics as a preventive measure (prophylaxis), while only 45% were prescribed antibiotics to treat infections.
Only 6% of the patients were prescribed antibiotics after identifying the specific bacteria causing the infection.
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) occurs when pathogens evolve and become resistant to drugs.
Misuse and overuse of antimicrobials in medical and animal husbandry practices contribute to the development of drug-resistant pathogens.
AMR is a global crisis and was responsible for 1.27 million deaths in 2019.
AMR makes infections harder to treat and increases the risks of medical procedures such as surgery and chemotherapy.
Infectious diseases specialists and critical-care experts have been calling for rational prescription of antibiotics and curbs on the use of drugs in animals and plants.
There is a crisis in antibiotic research and development, and urgent measures are needed to develop new drugs.
The role of doctors and the government in regulating drug use is crucial in combating AMR.
Strict regulation of antimicrobial use and funding research on newer antibiotics are necessary to address the AMR crisis.