TWN Info Service on Health Issues (Jul18/13)
27 July 2018
Third World Network

EU should fight antimicrobial resistance with better incentives

Dear friends and colleagues,

At a meeting of healthcare stakeholders in Europe organised by Science|Business, policy makers, industry and medical experts agreed that addressing the AMR crisis requires political and economic effort at a global level.

‘The single biggest task of the Commission is to present AMR as a matter of economic survival, and not just a matter of health; said Xavier Prats Monne, director general for health at the European Commission. ‘This is not just an enormous threat to public health, it is also a major economic problem.’

The core problem is that there is no profit to be made from new antibiotics and the challenge is how to make investing in antibiotics more attractive to industry and funding bodies, and how to incentivise investments while rationing use, so that antibiotics remain effective for longer.

Although better technologies are available for finding drug targets and accelerating the drug discovery process, there is not enough investment to translate discoveries through to clinical development and onto the market, Steward Cole, President of the Pasteur Institute, told the meeting. ‘There’s hope from a scientific standpoint but my concerns come from ensuring sustainable funding’, he said.

While the focus in AMR is on the development of new antibiotics, by preventing infections in the first place, vaccines have a huge role to play in the fight against drug-resistant bacteria. In this regard, the European Parliament’s committee on industry, research and energy is calling for more public funds for vaccine research.

For the full article dated 19 June 2018, please click here.

With best wishes,
Third World Network