03 October 2014 | News | By BioSpectrum Bureau
Drug resistant bugs on the rise: Malaysia
Alarming rise in the percentage of microbes developing drug resistance
Singapore: The Malaysian Health Ministry has warned that indiscriminate use of antibiotics must be stopped as antimicrobial resistance could be a major public health security concern in future.
The Ministry further said that over-prescription of antibiotics for common ailments resulted in the development of antimicrobial resistant strains in the society.
Dr Azman Abu Bakar, director of the medical development division of the Health Ministry, said, "The medical fraternity must preserve the efficacy of antibiotics and fight antimicrobial resistance by providing prescriptions for antibiotics only when necessary."
Dr Christopher Lee, senior physician, said that there is a substantial increase in resistant strains in Malaysia. He indicated that the levels of resistant Streptococcus pneumonia strains have increased by 18 percent in the last six years, while in case of Acinetobacter baumanii the resistant strains increased by 10 percent.
Dr Lee added that the resistance of bacteria strains in the ICU and CCU has gone up by 50-60 percent resulting in the use of fourth generation antibiotics to treat simple illness. These in turn promote antimicrobial resistance, he stated.
Dr Lee emphasized,"There has not been many antibiotics discovered in recent years, the US, one of the leading countries in drug discovery, has only released two new antibiotics. Things can turn fatal if people become resistant to the antibiotics that we have."