“Regulating the overuse of antibiotics”

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The indiscriminate and excessive use of non-prescription antibiotics in Bangladesh requires strict regulation to prevent the emergence of drug-resistant diseases, Neely Kaydos-Daniels, national director of the States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said on Wednesday. -United.

She said the misuse of antimicrobials in different parts of the world is responsible for the emergence of antibiotic-resistant “superbugs” that have caused the death of many people.

In addition, the use of antibiotics is common in livestock and feed in Bangladesh, which creates an additional threat to public health, she added.

Ms Daniels said this during a press conference on the “Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Programs and Partnerships with Bangladesh”, hosted by the US Embassy in Dhaka at the American Center from the city.

Referring to CDC’s activities in the country, she said CDC has worked with Bangladesh for 50 years and the permanent office in Dhaka has existed since 2003.

“Together with Bangladeshi scientists and officials, we have made breakthrough discoveries and knowledge on health topics that benefit the whole world,” she added.

Discussing common public health issues in Bangladesh, she said, “Antibiotics are easy to buy here without a prescription, while these drugs are also prescribed when not needed.”

Law enforcement is crucial to prevent the overuse of antibiotics in this regard, she suggested.

Mentioning CDC initiatives related to infection control in healthcare facilities, the public health expert said that infection prevention and control in hospital is also very important as it is highly preventable if the necessary measures are taken. taken.

“People who work in hospitals and clinics in Bangladesh are heroes because they are overwhelmed by the number of patients,” she said, adding that to prevent infections in hospitals, there should be staff trained, adequate hand-washing facilities, cleanliness and good ventilation. .

Calling Bangladeshi doctors highly skilled in treating diarrheal diseases, she said diarrhea and cholera here are seasonal diseases that are treated with oral saline solutions (ORS).

ORS was developed in Bangladesh and the country is giving away the recipe for free to the world which has saved lives all over the world, she noted.

Referring to the coronavirus pandemic, the CDC country director said the world has had two difficult years, all affected in myriad ways by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The work done before the pandemic on global health security by the CDC, the World Health Organization (WHO) and partner countries such as Bangladesh had a great impact on our ability to respond quickly to the threat posed by the COVID-19.

The CDC has supported the Institute of Disease Epidemiology, Control and Research (IEDCR) and the government of Bangladesh in their response to the pandemic from the start, she added.

For example, influenza project sites have been used to identify critically ill COVID patients; Fellows and graduates of the Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETP) conducted contact tracing, wrote guidelines and worked to protect national borders.

“But being in one pandemic doesn’t mean we’re immune to another. Looking ahead, we must build on the gains made in public health during the COVID-19 pandemic and continue to build Bangladesh’s capacity to prevent the spread of infectious diseases,” she added.

She also mentioned that the CDC was working with its Bangladeshi counterparts to prevent diseases like encephalitis, Nipah virus, free-living amoeba (also known as ‘brain-eating’ amoeba) known as Naegleria fowlery, etc.

In addition to scientific discovery and research, the CDC supports the Global Health Security Program (GHSA) in Bangladesh as part of an international effort focused on preventing and mitigating health threats from infectious diseases.

She said the CDC developed the FETP after its own applied epidemiology training program, the Epidemic Intelligence Service, while the CDC has provided technical assistance to the FETP-Bangladesh program at IEDCR since 2013.

The CDC has also previously worked with the Child Health Research Foundation (CHRF) to identify and monitor illnesses caused by the bacteria Streptococcus pneumonia in children at Dhaka Shishu Hospital.

This work has identified cases of meningitis in children and provided data on the number of children affected by a disease that could be prevented through vaccination, Ms Daniels said.

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