Health & Medicine

Should we be worried about antibiotic resistance?

We should all be grateful that we live in an age of antibiotics — a time when surgery is routine, childbirth is safe (at least in the developed world), and a simple cut is rarely worth worrying about. But is that era about to end?

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than two million Americans are sickened each year by antibiotic-resistant germs, and at least 23,000 of these people die from the infections. The UK’s chief medical officer recently called antibiotic-resistant microbes “as big a risk as terrorism.” President Barack Obama referenced antibiotic resistance in his State of the Union address.

What can you do to protect yourself from this growing threat? And what can we all do to make sure our arsenal of antibiotics remains effective? Watch the archived video below from the panel produced by The Forum at the Harvard School of Public Health. The panel, moderated by our health editor David Baron, started a conversation that continues with the hashtag #superbugsrise on Twitter.