An antibacterial 'superbug' found in the U.S. | The Tylt
The Washington Post has reported that a woman in Pennsylvania has a strain of E. Coli that is resistant to the antibiotic colistin, which is normally the "last line of defense." It's very possible that as this bacteria shrugs off colistin, it's also ushering in a post-antibacterial era. Superbugs that can't be wiped out by antibiotics can kill up to 50% of the people who get infected.
Scientists and researchers have been warning about superbugs for awhile. They say by 2050, antibiotic-resistant superbugs could be a leading cause of death globally.
This incident isn't the first time a superbug has been found in a person, though. And it seems as though the medical community has been warning about us being on a precipice for almost a decade, with no major consequences. To tackle the problem of superbugs isn't just a matter of "acting locally" and recycling. It's what we can call a "wicked problem" because it involves so many facets of society: How we treat the sick, how we raise livestock, how much we fund research, etc.
So the question is: will today's discovery be the straw that breaks the camel's back? Will this news convince the world that it's #TimeToAct against superbugs? What form that takes is another question (KYOTO Protocol, or Manhattan Project of medical research) but the alternative is that the world lumbers on and goes back to #BusinessAsUsual. If the building isn't burning down, there's no need to put water on it. Humans have a tendency to let their fears get ahold of them, but we shouldn't overreact.
An antibacterial 'superbug' found in the U.S.
I'll be speaking with health officials to get a full briefing on the case in PA and the work underway to protect all Americans.— Senator Bob Casey (@SenBobCasey) May 26, 2016