Yorkshire & Humber MEP calls for Europe-wide action on antibiotics crisis

17 November 2011

As more and more people are affected by infections and diseases resistant to antibiotics, Yorkshire & Humber MEP, Linda McAvan will tomorrow tell a major conference of senior doctors and pharmaceutical companies, "European countries must act together now to tackle the antibiotics crisis.”

Annually around 25,000 people from across the EU die from infections like MRSA that have become resistant to antibiotics and this number is set to continue growing.

Tomorrow’s Antibiotics Action conference will mark Antibiotics Awareness Day, a campaign designed to raise awareness of the responsible use of antibiotics. It also coincides with the European Commission action plan to thwart the spread of antimicrobial resistance.

Linda said: “Hospitals across Yorkshire and the Humber face a day-to-day battle against superbugs and it has become increasingly clear it is not a problem that can be solved by individual hospitals or even individual countries. European countries must act together now to tackle the antibiotics crisis.”

The EU action plan, backed by Linda and other Labour MEPs, will encourage doctors to only prescribe antibiotics when needed, will raise awareness so that patients take antibiotics properly, will encourage drug companies to develop much-needed new antibiotics and it will change the way antibiotics are given to farm animals.

Linda added: “We believe that if EU countries, pharmaceutical companies and laboratories across Europe work together new antibiotics resistant to superbugs can be developed. We are also emphasising the importance of using antibiotics correctly. We all know the crucial role they play in modern medicine and it is vital their value is not undermined.”

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