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Resistance to antibiotics could be causing unnecessary deaths in Ireland

An Irish MEP has proposed that the use of the antibiotics without prescription be banned.

Image: Shutterstock/Nicolesa

RESISTANCE TO ANTIBIOTICS could be killing people in Ireland, an MEP has said.

Speaking at the European Parliament yesterday, Marian Harkin, the independent MEP for the Midlands-North West constituency, said that the level that antibiotics are prescribed at in Ireland is worrying.

In an interview with EuroParlRadio, she said, “we are becoming more and more resistant to antibiotics.”

So that means what we now look on as fairly standard procedures like maybe a hip replacement or of course cancer therapies etc, that they would become next, neigh to, impossible because of the huge risks of infection. Now we’re not at that point yet, but we’re getting there.

Harkin’s concerns were specifically with nursing homes in Ireland, stating that reports had found the level of antibiotics prescribed here to be twice that of the European average.

These comments followed MEPs voting on a blueprint to promote safer healthcare in hospitals across the EU. The report notes that 8% to 12% of patients in hospitals across the EU suffer from “adverse events”, which are implicated in 37,000 deaths a year.

The blueprint looked at antibiotics in relation to both humans and animals.

On the use of antibiotics by humans, it was proposed that their use without prescription is strictly limited; that a microbiological diagnosis is required before they can be prescribed; that conflicts of interests between producers and prescribers are prevented; and clearer information on antimicrobial consumption and antimicrobial agents is published.

It was also proposed that MEPs urge pharmaceutical companies to develop new antibiotic drugs.

Read: Family raised $187 million for cancer research – “then spent it on cars and cruises”

Also: ‘No one wants to talk about their bowel movements, but some people are suffering’

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