Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) have called for greater efforts to curb antimicrobial use in the European Union (EU) and suggested the growing threat posed by antimicrobial resistance (AMR) should be tackled through a “One Health” approach.
Last week, MEPs adopted a non-binding resolution on a European One Health action plan against AMR, and stressed that the correct and prudent use of antimicrobials is essential to limit AMR from emerging in human healthcare, animal husbandry and aquaculture. They are calling on the European Commission and EU Member States to restrict the sale of antibiotics by health professionals and to remove any incentives to prescribe them.
“If nothing is done, antimicrobial resistance may cause more deaths than cancer by 2050. We have to start by looking at the whole cycle, because people’s and animal health are interconnected. Diseases are transmitted from people to animals and vice versa, and that is why we support the holistic approach of the ‘One Health’ initiative,” said rapporteur on the One Health action plan, Karin Kadenbach.
It comes as data suggest AMR is responsible for an estimated 25,000 deaths and €1.5 billion in extra healthcare costs every year in the EU alone.