You don't tug on superman's cape
You don't spit into the wind
You don't pull the mask off the old lone ranger
And you don't mess around with Jim
So, it's with some trepidation that I began reading the President's proposal to provide extra funds to tackle antibacterial resistance. Would there be any funds for infection prevention? When discussing past initiatives, we've remarked on how little attention is given to infection control programs and research. This time, however, things are looking better.
Here's how the $1.2 billion will be distributed under the current plan:
- $650 million to the NIH and the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority to expand development of antibacterial drugs and diagnostics
- $280 million for CDC-led efforts to curb overprescribing of antibiotics and track outbreaks of drug-resistant infections
- $47 million would go to FDA to evaluate new drugs and monitor livestock antibiotics use
- $77 million to USDA to help develop alternatives to the antibiotics used in farm animals
- $75 million to DoD and $85 million to VHA to focus on reducing antibiotic-resistent infections in health care settings
This is a well thought-out list and is very close to how I would wish to distribute the resources. I would perhaps request a bit more for CDC to study HAI prevention interventions in addition to stewardship efforts; however, this extra-funding, while long overdue, is on target. I'm also encouraged that the President is asking for increased funds and not reducing other critical research in infectious diseases like HIV, TB and malaria. Let's just hope Congress can approve this request and it's renewed annually. It will be nice to get back to work preventing HAI - this time with two hands and a mask to keep the spit off our faces.