Back in May, the British government sponsored a review, headed up by former Goldman Sachs chief economist Jim O'Neill, regarding solutions to the antibiotic resistance crisis. O Neill s final report suggested that we de-link profits from antibiotics for pharmaceutical companies and instead award them 1.5-3.5 billion dollar prizes for developing new antibiotics.
Since then, American Council on Science and Health friend and antibiotic guru, Dr. David Shlaes has been pondering how we could implement the recommendations in the O Neill report. He believes that industry needs more funding specifically for research on developing new antibiotics which is exactly what the O Neill report recommends, however, he also believes there are other hurdles than just funding to solving the current crisis.
Shlaes, writing On the Science 2.0 site describes how educating physicians about new antibiotics is an important aspect to implementing any new policies regarding antibiotic resistance. He uses the example of how Wyeth and the CDC paired up to increase physician understanding of the pneumococcal vaccine which was a significant win for both the pharmaceutical industry and public health, especially in children.
American Council on Science and Health s Dr. Josh Bloom adds Dave is your one-stop shopping for anything related to antibiotics. Whether it s the science behind resistance, clinical trials, the politics of the FDA, medical intervention, or what is in the pipeline (and how its doing). I don t think he is actually manufacturing vancomycin in his basement, but I ve been wrong before."