Skip main navigation

Why is antimicrobial resistance a big problem?

Because medication-resistant microbes are difficult and sometimes impossible to treat. The result is longer hospital stays and higher treatment costs, alongside higher mortality rates for infections that were once easy to cure, for instance, TB which is caused by the Mycobacteria tuberculosis bacteria.

As antimicrobial resistance increases, our ability to handle common infections decreases. Some experts think we are heading towards a post-antibiotic era, in which these infections will be as deadly as they were prior to the advent of antimicrobials.

Related stories on FutureLearn

FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Reach your personal and professional goals

Unlock access to hundreds of expert online courses and degrees from top universities and educators to gain accredited qualifications and professional CV-building certificates.

Join over 18 million learners to launch, switch or build upon your career, all at your own pace, across a wide range of topic areas.

Start Learning now