‘AMR will kill more people than cancer by 2050’

‘AMR will kill more people than cancer by 2050’

The NITI Aayog member Vinod K Paul said that deaths due to antimicrobial resistance (AMR), which is developing resistance to antibiotics, could surpass the cancer fatalities by 2050.

He said that about 10 million people will die of AMR each year exceeding 8.3 million people who die of cancer every year across the globe.

“It is a big concern for India due to its huge population where AMR could create an outbreak if preventive measures are not taken and awareness is not created from now. About 2% to 3% of the GDP (gross domestic product) may be lost in the process of addressing the huge health crisis,” added Paul.

He was addressing the Microcon 2018, the 42nd annual conference of Indian Association of Medical Microbiologists here on Thursday.

Paul said that as health professionals, be it microbiologists or virologists or even cardiac surgeons, for that matter, have to start creating awareness about AMR and use of antibiotics.

Need for awareness

The NITI Aayog member said the health professionals have to create awareness, sanitation, decreased use of antibiotics, increased surveillance, new rapid diagnostics and create opportunities for new microbiologists. He said a mass movement has to be created with the help of NGOs and engage schools and students in creating awareness about AMR.

“Raise the flag in creating awareness, money, resources will follow, an AMR unit has to be created in every department and the medical professionals have to take up a leadership role in addressing this global health crisis in the future. Efforts should also be made in creating a new vaccine in the coming days,” added Paul.

Ayushman Bharat

Vinod K Paul said that Ayushman Bharat, the ambitious health scheme launched
by the Centre in September, has been implemented better than GST (Goods and Services Tax).

However, he said, issues related to information technology in updating the details, hospitals taking time to process the applications and creating state health agency are some of the teething problems.

“Barring Telangana, Odisha and Delhi, all other states and Union territories have implemented the health scheme successfully. Uttar Pradesh and Bihar are taking some time to roll out the scheme,” Paul said.


Get a round-up of the day's top stories in your inbox

Check out all newsletters

Get a round-up of the day's top stories in your inbox