March 27, 2015
1 min read

White House releases 5-year strategy to combat antibiotic resistance

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The White House released a report today outlining the government’s plans to reduce the threat of antibiotic-resistant bacteria during the next 5 years.

Developed in response to an executive order from President Barack Obama in September, the National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria is a government-wide strategy to prevent, detect and control illness related to antibiotic-resistant infections. The plan also is designed to “guide action by public health, health care and veterinary partners in a common effort to address urgent and serious drug-resistant threats that affect people in the U.S. and around the world.”

Major goals of the plan include:

  • slowing the emergence and spread of resistant bacterial infections;
  • strengthening national One-Health surveillance efforts;
  • advancing the development and use of new rapid diagnostic tests;
  • accelerating research and development of new antibiotics, therapeutics and vaccines; and
  • improving international collaboration and collaboration for prevention, surveillance, control and research.

A government task force formed to develop the plan, along with the Presidential Advisory Council on Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria, will monitor progress toward these goals. Other outcomes include the creation of a regional public health laboratory network, establishment of a specimen repository and sequence database, development of new diagnostic tests and two or more antibiotic drug candidates or therapeutics.

“We are encouraged to see the president and other high level government leaders commit to implementing multipronged policy solutions to protect patients and public health from the dangers of antibiotic resistant infections,” the Infectious Diseases Society of America wrote in a statement released today. “This action plan marks the beginning of an important new phase of well-coordinated federal activity in this area, and now significant work must be undertaken and new investments must be made.”

Reference: National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria. Accessed March 27, 2015.