The Vice Chancellor, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Professor Charles Esimone, says the cost of antibiotic resistance could reach an alarming level in Nigeria if urgent steps were not taken by the Federal Government to checkmate the excessive intake.
According to him, most of the studies, innovative works of Nigerian academics on antibiotic resistance in the country had been relegated with little or no support from the health institutions, private sector and the government.
Delivering his inaugural lecture at the school auditorium, the Professor of Biopharmaceutics (Esimone) expressed the hope that series of researches and collaboration done over the years were gradually tending towards the development of a National Action Plan on Antibiotic Resistance in the country.
He noted that when the Plan would be passed by the National Assembly, it would no doubt help in tackling the incessant use and procurement of antibiotics, especially for non medical purposes.
According to Professor Esimone, antibiotic resistance has become a major clinical and public health problem as bacteria have responded with propagation of progeny and no longer susceptible to them.
The Vice Chancellor explained that the inappropriate use of antibiotics had often been a challenge confronting effective health care delivery as it had led to a steady increase in drug resistance, which could cause life threatening infections.
Professor Esimone, therefore, harped on the need for continuous awareness on the health benefits of hand washing, which he said was one of the ways to fight against unseen microbes that were enemies to human being.
He however confirmed that there were
herbs widely used as medicine in Africa, which were also beneficial supplement for different infectious diseases, especially for viral Hepatitis, Tumor as well as serve as immune for compromised patients.
The Vice Chancellor expressed regret that one of the reasons improper prescription of drugs thrived in the society was because of lack of Standard Treatment Guideline (STG) as most medical practitioners were inclined to practice their drug information for treatment rather than adhering to standard practices.