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The consumption of antibiotics has increased significantly over the past 15 years, according to a recent study. The increase occurred despite the international push to reduce the use of these important drugs.

Researchers found that while many low- and middle-income countries still lack appropriate access to antibiotics, the global increase was driven largely by some developing countries which face more drug-resistant infections and a lack of tools to test infections and track how these medications are used.

To tackle antimicrobial resistance (AMR), we need to look at all the factors behind how and when antibiotics are used. One obstacle I often see as a medical microbiologist working in developing countries, is a lack of access to clean water, which makes preventing and controlling infections nearly impossible. It is a major driver of inappropriate antibiotic use and, ultimately, the growth in antibiotic-resistant bugs – so-called “superbugs”.

Read the full article on The Conversation website, written by Abhilasha Karkey (Centre for Tropical Medicine and Global Health, Nuffield Department of Medicine). 

Oxford is a subscribing member of The ConversationFind out how you can write for The Conversation.

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