LONDON – If a lack of commercial incentives has led the pharma industry to stop developing antibiotics then the specter of antimicrobial resistance should lure it back in, according to a UK government-sponsored study itemizing the economic toll of drug-resistant infections.
The research shows that without concerted action the annual death rate from previously treatable infections will rise from 700,000 per annum worldwide now to 10 million in 2050. By then antimicrobial resistance will cause more deaths than cancer, which in comparison will account for 8.2 million deaths per annum by 2050.
The full picture of what a world without antimicrobials would look like, “indicates this is one of the world’s biggest problems,” according to the report. However, it adds, “it need not be the hardest.”
The study, “Antimicrobial Resistance: Tackling a Crisis for the Health and Wealth of Nations