David Cameron and Xi Jinping Ju Peng/ZumaPress

El desperdicio de medicamentos y la creación de superbacterias

LONDRES – Esta semana el Primer Ministro británico David Cameron y el Presidente chino Xi Jinping anunciaron un nuevo fondo para ayudar a financiar la investigación, apuntando a abordar el problema de las superbacterias, es decir, microbios patógenos que han desarrollado resistencia a los medicamentos convencionales. Se trató de un momento tremendamente gratificante para mí, como jefe de un panel de evaluación independiente que desde febrero ha llamado a la creación de un fondo de innovación para dar respuesta a la resistencia antimicrobiana. Lo más importante es que se trata de un paso crucial para llegar a una solución real a este problema global y que demuestra el papel vital que puede desempeñar la innovación científica y comercial de una economía emergente, sobre todo cuando es China el país que lleva la delantera.

El anuncio complementa una reunión realizada en Berlín este mes, en que los ministros de salud de los países del G-7 (Canadá, Francia, Alemania, Italia, Japón, el Reino Unido y Estados Unidos) buscaron soluciones a los problemas de salud global más apremiantes. Un resultado esencial fue el compromiso conjunto de enfrentar la resistencia antimicrobiana, “primero, mejorando el control y la prevención de las infecciones; segundo, preservando la eficacia de los medicamentos antimicrobianos actuales y futuros; y tercero, participando en actividades de investigación que apunten a optimizar estos métodos y desarrollar nuevas sustancias antimicrobianas, vacunas, tratamientos alternativos y herramientas de diagnóstico rápido”.

Son los objetivos correctos, pero sólo pueden ser eficaces si la mayor parte del mundo colabora para lograrlos de manera simultánea; después de todo, la resistencia a los medicamentos, igual que los microbios, no se detiene en los controles fronterizos. Aquí es donde los países del G-20 (y especialmente sus economías emergentes) tienen la mayor responsabilidad, ya que son los que sufren más las infecciones resistentes a los medicamentos y los que más pueden hacer por solucionar el problema.

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