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Thursday 7 April is World Health Day. This year, World Health Day focuses on the theme “Antimicrobial resistance: no action today, no cure tomorrow”. Antimicrobial resistance (AMR), also known as drug resistance, is a serious world health problem that is rapidly becoming more dangerous.
Because of AMR, resistant organisms (including bacteria, viruses and some parasites) are able to withstand attack by antimicrobial medicines, so that standard treatments become ineffective and infections persist and may spread to others. AMR is driven by the inappropriate and irrational use of medicines. Such misuse includes not taking the complete course of prescribed antimicrobials, using poor quality antimicrobials, or overusing antimicrobials. Animal husbandry involving antimicrobials for growth and disease prevention also promotes AMR. For World Health Day 2011, the World Health Organization (WHO) will be calling for intensified global commitment to safeguard these medicines for future generations. WHO will call on governments and stakeholders worldwide to implement the policies and practices needed to prevent and counter the emergence of highly resistant microorganisms. For more information, visit who.int/world-health-day/2011.
Dr Gillian Opie discusses the opening of the Mercy Health Breastmilk Bank. Listen >
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