An infectious disease expert has warned against indiscriminate antibiotic use, saying that nearly half the antibiotics Australians use ,are prescribed inappropriately. This issue figures on the agenda at the Australian Society for Antimicrobials annual scientific discussion meeting in Sydney.
Microbiologist John Turnidge, of the Adelaide Women's and Children's Hospital, said that this trend of antibiotic overdose has led to an increase in drug-resistant infections.
Prof Turnidge has expressed disspaointment that the federal government has not risen to the occasion with respect to this problem."We're pretty high antibiotic users, we use twice as much per capita as countries like Denmark and the Netherlands.We know that they don't have any less infections than we do so it tells you immediately that half the antibiotics we use in humans in this country are inappropriate." Professor Turnidge said in an interview.
Peter Collignon carried a study which was published last year, that nearly 1,700 Australians, in a year, succumbed to Staphylococcus aureus, or Golden Staph, infections, and in most cases caused by drug resistant strains. Since Australia does not have proper resources to probe into this problem, this figure is bit of a guess work.
According to him, this is a case of bad habits dying hard. This practice of indiscriminate antibiotic use, has been in practice from 20-30 years , and this needs to be stopped. Instead, new methods or alternative treatment mehods that minimse antibiotics use should be adopted.