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White House Calls For Task Force To Devise Strategy To Tackle Antibiotic Resistance

News outlets report on President Barack Obama’s executive order to set up a task force aimed at combating the threat of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, setting a deadline of February 15 for its members to submit a strategy.

CNN: President signs order to fight superbugs
“The rise in antibiotic-resistant bacteria could lead to a future full of untreatable infections, experts have warned us for years. Now the Obama administration is stepping up its efforts to combat the rising problem of antibiotic resistance. The president signed an executive order Thursday establishing a new inter-agency task force charged with developing a national strategy to combat antibiotic-resistant bacteria…” (Young, 9/18).

CQ News: White House Seeks New Ways to Slow Antibiotic Resistance
“The Obama administration Thursday announced an initiative to address the critical problem of antibiotic resistance, upping its efforts with a new task force and national strategy. President Barack Obama signed an executive order, directing the secretaries of Agriculture, Defense, and Health and Human Services to head up the Task Force for Combating Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria and directing the task force to submit an action plan to the president by February 2015. The order also establishes a presidential advisory council made up of nongovernmental experts…” (Gustin, 9/18).

The Hill: Obama ratchets up fight against killer bacteria
“President Obama moved via executive action Thursday to quell the rise of deadly antibiotic-resistant bacteria blamed for tens of thousands of deaths a year in the United States. Obama signed an order establishing a new interagency task force and directed its members to deliver a plan by Feb. 15 to combat the threat of so-called ‘super bugs,’ bacteria that have built up a resistance to antibiotics commonly prescribed to people and animals…” (Goad, 9/18).

New York Times: U.S. Aims to Curb Peril of Antibiotic Resistance
“The Obama administration on Thursday announced measures to tackle the growing threat of antibiotic resistance, outlining a national strategy that includes incentives for the development of new drugs, tighter stewardship of existing ones, and improvements in tracking the use of antibiotics and the microbes that are resistant to them…” (Tavernise, 9/18).

Reuters: White House calls for task force to tackle antibiotic-resistant bugs
“The U.S. government will set up a task force and presidential advisory council to tackle the growing threat of antibiotic resistance, setting a Feb. 15 deadline for it to outline specific steps, White House advisers said on Thursday…” (Huffstutter, 9/18).

ScienceInsider: Bad bugs inspire White House task force and $20 million prize
“In the fight against antibiotic-resistant bacteria, the U.S. government is dangling a new incentive: a $20 million prize for a quick diagnostic test to recognize highly resistant infections. The prize is just one in a slew of actions announced by the White House today to signal its greater attention to the threat of antibiotic-resistant microbes…” (Servick, 9/18).

Scientific American: White House Unveils Strategy to Combat Antibiotic Resistance
“Antibiotic resistance poses a dire threat in hospitals and communities. To help limit such risk, health care professionals should begin sequencing the DNA of offending bacteria, the White House’s council of science advisers said in a new report…” (Maron, 9/18).

White House: FACT SHEET: Obama Administration Takes Actions to Combat Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria
“…Controlling the development and spread of antibiotic resistance is a top national security and public health priority for the Obama administration. Taken together, the Executive Order, National Strategy, and PCAST report will significantly help the Federal government curb the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, potentially saving thousands of lives…” (9/18).

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