The overuse of antibiotics has created a potential public health menace—the growth of microbial infections resistant to them. Antibiotic resistance stems from many causes that include the use of antibiotics in animal feed, medical practitioners’ over-prescription, the general public’s misuse of the drugs, and the failure to develop new antibiotics. This has led to the development of so called “super bugs” that are often immune to first line antibiotic therapies, such as penicillin, and to more powerful, broad-spectrum treatments.
The CDC considers the primary source of antibiotic resistant infections in humans to come from our overuse of antibiotics and the failure to develop new antibiotics. In the words of the director of the CDC, “[t]he most resistant organisms in hospitals are emerging in those settings because of poor anti-microbial stewardship among humans.” Thus, this Article focuses on legal strategies both to control the use of antibiotics, and to develop antibiotic drug therapies to halt the spread of antibiotic resistant infections from person to person.
Defusing the Bug Bomb: Legal Strategies to Combat Antibiotic Resistant Infections,
18 J. Health Care L. & Pol'y
Available at: http://digitalcommons.law.umaryland.edu/jhclp/vol18/iss1/5