World Health Day: How to make a terrifying message boring

Drug resistance. Here’s WHO‘s Dr. Margaret Chan warning:

Yes, it’s a pretty boring video presentation — unless you actually listen to what she’s saying. Then, it’s kind of terrifying.The drugs we have come to depend upon to protect us from infectious disease and other killers are losing their oomph.

As NPR’s Scott Hensley notes, drug resistance is natural: Bacteria and viruses will always adapt, evolve, in order to get around our medications. So the trick is to use drugs wisely and not contribute to the problem by over-use of antibiotics, which basically trains bugs how to evade our defenses.

Other stories marking World Health Day and the problem of drug resistance:

The Guardian: Antibiotic resistance – Bacteria are winning the war

Scientific American: Drug-resistant genes found in bugs found in New Delhi water system

SciDev.net: We are entering a post-antibiotic era

Reuters: WHO warns that drug misuse increases drug resistance

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Tom Paulson

Tom Paulson is founder and lead journalist at Humanosphere. Prior to operating this online news site, he reported on science,  medicine, health policy, aid and development for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Contact him at tom[at]humanosphere.org or follow him on Twitter @tompaulson.