In response to the Guardian article 'Apocalyptic threat posed by antibiotic resistance' (24 January), some may accuse Dame Sally Davies of scaremongering but we are glad to see that this issue is being raised at government level.
Last year we set up an industry taskforce to look at this problem. Twelve years after the publication of the 2000 UK AMR Strategy, we were pleased to see that Department of Health announced its intention to review their approach to dealing with antimicrobial resistance. We responded to the draft strategy with our recommendations but we have been disappointed by the continual delays in publishing the updated strategy.
Antimicrobial resistance is a serious and growing problem and we believe that for there to be a continual supply of effective antibiotics, a comprehensive review of the research and development environment and good stewardship are required urgently. Effective stewardship alone will not be sufficient to meet the antibiotic challenge. The pharmaceutical industry has some new antibiotics coming through its pipelines but until all interested parties work together to understand the commercial barriers to the development of new antibiotics we won’t address this challenge effectively.
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