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Between the years 2000 and 2010, the use of antibiotics in the world increased by 30%.
Between the years 2000 and 2010, the use of antibiotics in the world increased by 30%.

Fresh Warning Against Excessive Antibiotic Use

Preparation of a national plan to combat antimicrobial resistance has begun and it will soon be communicated to all relevant organizations

Fresh Warning Against Excessive Antibiotic Use

Overuse of antibiotics in Iran has reached dangerous levels, with more than half of prescribed drugs deemed unnecessary by many experts.
According to Health Minister Hassan Qazizadeh Hashemi, hospitals account for only 20% of the antibiotic use and the rest is goes for outpatient treatment.
“Although the average number of medicine in each prescription has reduced from 3.4 to 2.7 thanks to the ministry’s plans, the amount of antibiotics given to patients is still too high,” he said, adding that one in every 10 prescribed items are antibiotics, IRNA reported.
Overuse of antibiotics can lead to antimicrobial resistance, meaning the bacteria evolve to form defenses against the drugs.
The health minister warned against the phenomenon, emphasizing that it can and will have financial and health costs.
Antibiotics, also called antibacterials, are a type of antimicrobial drug used in the treatment and prevention of bacterial infections. They may either kill or inhibit the growth of bacteria.
Antimicrobial resistance is the ability of a microorganism (like bacteria, viruses, and some parasites) to stop an antimicrobial (such as antibiotics, antivirals and antimalarials) from working against it. As a result, standard treatments become ineffective, infections persist and may spread to others.
The emergence of resistance of bacteria to antibiotics is a common phenomenon. It often reflects evolutionary processes that take place during antibiotic therapy. The antibiotic treatment may select for bacterial strains with physiologically or genetically enhanced capacity to survive high doses of the drug.
Between the years 2000 and 2010, the use of antibiotics in the world increased by 30%.
A considerable portion of antibiotic overuse is in the animal farming sector. In 2010, approximately 63,000 tons of the medicine was used in animal husbandry and the figure is expected reach 105,000 tons by 2030, according to the minister.
“Traces of the drug in Iran’s meat products are higher than standard levels, which is one cause of antimicrobial resistance in bacteria that infect people,” Qazizadeh said.
As per law, antibiotic doses used for farm animals have to be monitored by Iran’s Veterinary  Organization.
The minister pointed to the Iranian Public Health Association and the High Council for Health—both chaired by President Hassan Rouhani—as two major entities that make decisions about policies that help prevent antimicrobial resistance.
At the provincial level, the association’s meetings are directed by the governor generals.
The High Council for Health comprises nine ministers and meets twice a year.
“Preparation of a national plan to combat antimicrobial resistance has begun and it will soon be communicated to all relevant organizations,” Qazizadeh said, adding that the people involved in devising the plan will draw on expertise from abroad and advice from the World Health Organization and the World Organization for Animal Health.
He called for hospitals, Iran’s Veterinarian Organization and the Food and Drug Administration to cooperate in implementing the plan.
The scheme will include programs to control the use of antibiotics by humans as well as in the agriculture, fishing, and animal farming sectors.
“Revision of laws, upgrading laboratories and funding research on new antibiotics with bio- and nano-technology are essential to achieving the goal,” he said.

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