The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 2019 Antibiotic Resistance Threats report shows that more people face antibiotic resistance (AR) than originally understood in the 2013 report. There are more than 2.8 million AR infections occurring in the United States each year. Additionally, there were nearly twice as many annual deaths from AR infections in 2013 than originally reported.1
However, deaths due to AR infections have decreased by 18% since the CDC’s 2013 AR threats report, reflecting the effectiveness of AR reduction efforts.1 The CDC recognizes that simply developing new antibiotics will not address the problem of AR and that diagnostics can be just as critical a tool in the fight against infections because they increase the accuracy and speed of a patient’s diagnosis. Thus, implementing PCR testing improves patient outcomes, decreases length of stay and lowers overall costs.2,3
PCR [testing] cannot only lead to optimal antibiotics that are targeted at the offending bacteria on the day of admission, but also decrease unnecessary empiric antibiotics, which is the current practice. In the patients that we utilized this test on, we were able to enact an intervention that prevented or stopped unnecessary antibiotic use in 100% of the cases.”
– Internist and research fellow at David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles
1.Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More people in the United States dying from antibiotic-resistant infections than previously estimated [press release]. https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2019/p1113-antibiotic-resistant.html. Accessed February 16, 2020.
2.Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Antibiotic Resistance Threats in the United States, 2019. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, CDC; 2019. 43.
3.Rosenthal T. RDTs changing the landscape of ID clinical care. https://www.idse.net/Bacterial-Infections/Article/12-19/RDTs-Changing-the-Landscape-of-ID-Clinical-Care/56651. Published December 19, 2019. Accessed February 16, 2020.