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Preventing infections by improving access to safe water and sanitation

Many countries still lack effective sanitation but attitudes towards good sanitation have been influenced by the availability of effective antibiotics
© University of East Anglia

It is a fact that many countries still lack effective sanitation infrastructure. Preventing infections by improving access to safe water and sanitation is key to beating rising drug resistance.

But attitudes towards the necessity of good sanitation have been influenced by the widespread availability of effective antibiotics and we have relied upon quick, effective cures for infectious diseases instead of disease prevention and control.

As the UK government’s recently commissioned O’Neil report states “This reliance on cures instead of prevention means there is over-use of medicines such as antibiotics, which in turn contributes to the development of antimicrobial resistance.”1

1 Infection prevention, control and surveillance: limiting the development and spread of drug resistance. The review on antimicrobial resistance chaired by Jim O’Neill March 2016

© University of East Anglia
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Using Infection Control to Combat Antimicrobial Resistance

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