We use cookies to give you a better experience. Carry on browsing if you're happy with this, or read our cookies policy for more information.

Skip main navigation

The growing problem of antibiotic resistant infections

Society faces a rising tide of new drug-resistant strains of infectious bacteria that are already difficult to treat.
Stopwatch showing 3 seconds - by 2050 the death toll could be a staggering one person every 3 seconds if AMR is not tackled now
© University of East Anglia
Society faces a rising tide of new drug-resistant strains of infectious bacteria that are already difficult to treat.
The number of bacteria that are developing resistance to the antibiotics that we use to treat infections at the current time is increasing rapidly.
Unfortunately, we are also facing a significant wait of at least another decade or even longer, before any new antibiotics become available to treat patients with the worst superbugs.
The development of new vaccines to prevent infections and other alternative treatments to combat infectious diseases is likely to take even longer to develop.
What is this going to mean in practice?
Well if we do not take action now to try and combat the growing problem of antimicrobial resistance, then the likely outcome is truly frightening.
We are facing a future where annually, on a global scale, more than 10 million people will be dying of antibiotic resistant infection.
Indeed, at least 700,000 people die every year already from drug- resistant infections.
This will have a huge impact on our society. Infectious diseases will once again become the leading cause of death on the worldwide stage.
© University of East Anglia
This article is from the free online

Using Infection Control to Combat Antimicrobial Resistance

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Our purpose is to transform access to education.

We offer a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. These are delivered one step at a time, and are accessible on mobile, tablet and desktop, so you can fit learning around your life.

We believe learning should be an enjoyable, social experience, so our courses offer the opportunity to discuss what you’re learning with others as you go, helping you make fresh discoveries and form new ideas.
You can unlock new opportunities with unlimited access to hundreds of online short courses for a year by subscribing to our Unlimited package. Build your knowledge with top universities and organisations.

Learn more about how FutureLearn is transforming access to education