Pharmaceutical waste awakens super-powerful bacteria in the environment: A call to action

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Pathways of antimicrobial agents in ecosystems. credit: Biosafety and health (2023). DOI: 10.1016/j.bsheal.2023.10.005

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Pathways of antimicrobial agents in ecosystems. credit: Biosafety and health (2023). DOI: 10.1016/j.bsheal.2023.10.005

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a global threat, particularly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), causing prolonged illness, increased use of antibiotics, increased healthcare costs, and avoidable deaths. Masu. If AMR is not tackled, 24 million people could fall into deep poverty by 2030, hindering progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

A call to action by A. Rayan, Department of Epidemiology, Alexandria University, Egypt, was published in the journal Rehabilitation. Biosafety and health.

AMR spreads through interconnected ecosystems, with humans, animals, and the environment acting as reservoirs. Pharmaceutical wastewater, which is rich in antibiotics and resistance genes, poses a significant environmental risk, mainly due to improper treatment and irresponsible disposal.

The pharmaceutical industry contributes significantly to environmental pollution with antibiotics through various wastewater management practices. Discharge of contaminated pharmaceutical wastewater has negative impacts on water sources and ecosystems. Adopting a One Health approach to curbing the spread of AMR requires urgent collaborative efforts across policymakers, regulators, manufacturers, researchers, civil society, and communities.

Developing global standards for antibiotic residues in pharmaceutical waste, effective treatments, and diagnostics is essential to address the environmental impact of AMR while protecting public health and the environment. National action plans must include a comprehensive strategy to combat AMR. Maintaining the effectiveness of antibiotics and ensuring sustainable production requires a united front from all stakeholders.

For more information:
Rehabilitation A. Ryan, Pharmaceutical waste awakens superbugs in the environment: A call to action, Biosafety and health (2023). DOI: 10.1016/j.bsheal.2023.10.005

Provided by Compuscript Ltd.

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