SINGAPORE: According to a new report by the World Health Organisation, resistance to antibiotics poses a "major global threat" to public health.
And in Singapore, the Ministry of Health (MOH) is aware of the problem.
Various bacterial infections here have been found to develop different degrees of resistance to antibiotics.
Also emerging are cases of bacterial infections that are resistant to certain powerful, broad spectrum antibiotics, which are considered the last line of defence.
One of the causes of resistance is the over-use of antibiotics.
Cases of infections that have become resistant to antibiotics are more difficult to treat, and to combat that, new antibiotics have been developed.
But it will take time before the new antibiotics are approved and available in the market.
Chan Soo Chung, executive director of the National Healthcare Group Pharmacy, said: "Some of the more potent ones will require delivery by injection rather than oral medication, and therefore it is going to drive up costs, plus the fact that you are exposing people to more side effects from more potent drugs."
MOH said it will continue to work with healthcare institutions and other stakeholders to reduce the inappropriate use of antibiotics.
It will also emphasise the importance of hand hygiene and good infection control practices. - CNA/nd
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