Cornelius (Neil) J. Clancy
Infectious Disease News attended the World Anti-Microbial Resistance Congress in Washington, D.C., and asked Cornelius (Neil) J. Clancy, MD, associate professor of medicine and director of the extensively drug-resistant pathogen lab and mycology program at the University of Pittsburgh, what he saw and heard during the meeting.
This is the third of these conferences that I have had the opportunity to attend, and in a lot of ways, the issues being spoken about today are the same as those spoken about at the first meeting I attended. The marketplace is still broken for new antimicrobials. There is still a need for market reform and restructuring of reimbursement models to more fairly capture the societal value of antibiotics.
My take-home message from the meeting, though, focuses on the progress we’ve made since that first meeting I attended. It’s been small and it’s been incremental, but it’s been real. If you look at things like what CMS has done with the Common Rule in the United States and, perhaps more importantly, its recognition of problems faced in antibiotic development, or if you look at the U.K. subscription model and the pilot project that’s being rolled out with that as a new model, or some of the work that was presented by the European Investment Bank on investment in antibiotic development — these are all encouraging developments. From that point of view, I hope we can see a way forward for the field. The big question is: Can we make enough progress in stabilizing things to keep antibiotic development viable, until larger, more long-lasting reforms are put in place?
Disclosure: Clancy reports being awarded investigator-initiated research grants from Astellas, Cidara, Melinta and Merck for unrelated projects, serving on advisory boards or consulting for Astellas, Cidara, the Medicines Company, Merck, Needham & Company, Qpex, Scynexis and Shionogi and speaking at symposia sponsored by Merck and T2Biosystems.