Our three goals
1. Education- We want to provide members of the community information so that they can obtain the most effective treatments when they need antibiotics. This is the priority of this campaign.We are creating a guide to antibiotics and resistance that we want to make available in our community. We have translators lined up to translate it into Spanish, Hmong, and Punjabi, because those three languages are important to us. We are going to distribute the guide through senior centers, daycare centers, nursing homes, and clinics. Because this is a grassroots effort, and so many students are involved, it gives us a unique opportunity to reach people who might not be interested in resistance. We have other important missions too, that we would like to address later, or if funding allows, as an after effect of this campaign.
2. Research- Evolutionary biology holds the keys to unlocking solutions for fighting resistant superbugs. Bacteria evolve antibiotic resistance. We have found a way of reversing evolution. We need some help to test it out enough to be able to safely use it.
3. Impact- Our local hospital is working with us to show that our method of reversing evolution works. They provide us with resistant strains and pharmacy records so that we can do research in a real clinical environment. We are identifying antibiotics that they can cycle among hospital patients to stop antibiotic resistant superbugs from evolving. The discoveries we make here will most likely apply to hospitals in other cities as well.
Why this project is important ?
- How many people do you know who have become sick from bacteria, or from antibiotics? The numbers are astounding. It is a problem for everyone. Maybe that person is you, maybe a loved one, a family member, a neighbor, a classmate, or a friend. We all know someone who has been affected by antibiotic resistance.
- Sometimes antibiotics don't work and people are hospitalized or die.
- Sometimes antibiotics have dangerous side effects.
- Sometimes stomachs hurt badly for a very long time after taking antibiotics.
People who are the most threatened
People under the age of 3 and over the age of 60, and those who are immunocompromised are the most vulnerable to resistant infections. Side effects of antibiotics are also worse in elderly populations.
- -Antibiotic resistant bacteria kill more people every year than HIV/AIDS.
- -In the United States alone, there are annually at least 120,000 deaths from antibiotic resistant infections that are improperly treated due to a scarcity of reliable antibiotics.
- -There are at least 80,000 limb amputations
- -There are 1.7 million multidrug resistant hospital acquired infections that extend hospital stays, increase medical expenses and decrease quality of life.