President Calls for New Actions to Combat the Growing Threat of Drug Resistance
(Washington, D.C.) – Today, President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) released a report on Combating Antibiotic Resistance. The President also released a report called National Strategy on Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria, and signed an executive order directing departments and agencies to take action against this growing threat.
Congressman Gene Green stated: “The threat of resistance is too big to ignore, and unless swift and aggressive actions are taken, will have a devastating impact on public health. We’ve heard it from the World Health Organization, the United Kingdom, and now from President Obama. We welcome the Administration’s efforts to combat antibiotic resistance, but Congress must also act. We have the tools and authority to create a path for rapid development of safe and efficient new drugs. Drug resistance can be slowed, but it cannot be stopped. We have to act now.”
For more than a decade, health experts have warned about the growing threat of drug-resistant bacteria or “superbugs” and called for new drugs to be developed. In 2012, Reps. Gene Green (D-TX) and Phil Gingrey (R-GA) authored and pushed the Generating Antibiotic Incentives Now (GAIN) Act through Congress and it was signed into law as part of the FDA Safety and Innovation Act. GAIN incentivizes the development of new antibiotics to treat serious and life-threatening infections, and its implementation has been a success. However, it was only the first step. Much more needs to be done to combat the threat of superbugs. Green and Gingrey have already introduced the next step, H.R. 3742, the Antibiotic Development to Advance Patient Treatment (ADAPT) Act, which is scheduled for a hearing before the House Subcommittee on Health on September 19, 2014.