National antibiotic resistance plan released

Comprehensive plan identifies critical actions to be taken by key federal agencies to combat the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

The White House released March 27 a comprehensive plan that identifies critical actions to be taken by key federal departments and agencies to combat the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

The National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria — which was developed by the interagency Task Force for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria in response to Executive Order 13676: Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria — outlines steps for implementing the National Strategy on Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria and addressing the policy recommendations of the President's Council of Advisors on Science & Technology report on combating antibiotic resistance.

According to the White House, the national action plan provides a roadmap to guide the nation in rising to the challenge of antibiotic resistance and potentially saving thousands of lives. The action plan outlines federal activities over the next five years to enhance domestic and international capacity to prevent and contain outbreaks of antibiotic-resistant infections; maintain the efficacy of current and new antibiotics, and develop and deploy next-generation diagnostics, antibiotics, vaccines and other therapeutics.

These activities are consistent with investments in the President's fiscal 2016 budget, which nearly doubles the amount of federal funding for combating and preventing antibiotic resistance to more than $1.2 billion.

The action plan is organized around five goals for collaborative action by the U.S. government, in partnership with foreign governments, individuals and organizations aiming to strengthen healthcare, public health, veterinary medicine, agriculture, food safety and research and manufacturing, a White House fact sheet said.

The five goals are:

1. Slow the emergence of resistant bacteria and prevent the spread of resistant infections.

2. Strengthen national one-health surveillance efforts to combat resistance.

3. Advance development and use of rapid and innovative diagnostic tests for identification and characterization of resistant bacteria.

4. Accelerate basic and applied research and development for new antibiotics, other therapeutics and vaccines.

5. Improve international collaboration and capacities for antibiotic resistance prevention, surveillance, control, and antibiotic research and development.

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