Impact of Antimicrobial Resistance

Antibiotic resistance is the ability of bacteria to resist and survive the effects of an antibiotic medication. (1) Antibiotic resistance is one of the world’s most pressing public health problems. (2) It is estimated to cause 700,000 deaths a year worldwide (3). Without effective intervention, by 2050 antibiotic resistance may cause 10 million deaths a year worldwide. (3)

  • Antibiotic resistance may cause infections that were once easily treatable to become dangerous (2)
  • Antibiotic-resistant bacteria can spread to family members, schoolmates and co-workers, and may threaten your community (2)
  • Antibiotic resistance is limiting the choice of medications that can be used to effectively treat infections. Doctors may need to prescribe a second or third drug if the first antibiotic doesn’t work, and they may even run out of treatment options (1)
  • Antibiotic resistance can cause delays in getting the right treatment to patients and may result in them getting sicker or even dying (1)
  • If a patient gets severely ill they will need more care as well as alternative and potentially more expensive antibiotics, which may have more severe side effects (1,3)


  1. European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control .Factsheet for the general public - Antimicrobial resistance.
    Available at: Accessed 26 December 2018
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Antibiotic Resistance Questions and Answers.
    Available at: Accessed 26 December 2018
  3. O’Neill J. Antimicrobial resistance: Tackling a crisis for the health and wealth of nations. London: Wellcome Trust; 2016. Accessed 31 December 2018

PP-CPF-IND-0007 | 11th January 2019