Impact of Access to Medicines on Public Health. Problems Associated With Access, Use, and Abuse of Antibiotics [post]

Antonio G. Pisabarro, Denisse P. Rivera de la Torre
2020 unpublished
Access to medicines is one of the essential problems in Public Health of low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The World Health Organization (WHO) defines access to medicines as the possibility of "having continuously accessible and affordable medicines in public or private health facilities that are within a kilometer of the place of residence." Access to medicines, as defined by the WHO, is not fully guaranteed in many LMICs and even in many regions of high-resource countries. The WHO
more » ... ntries. The WHO identifies several factors as determinants of limitations in the access to medicines: rational selection, affordable prices, sustainable financing, and reliable health services. The action on these factors makes it possible to improve universal access to medicines with consequent improvement in Public Health. Adequate access to antibiotics and vaccination will avoid a large part of the deaths caused by infectious diseases in the LMICs. However, the emergence of resistance and the difficulties in vaccination campaigns due to socio-political or cultural problems make it challenging to fight many easily treatable infectious diseases. The use and abuse of antibiotics are inevitably associated with the appearance of resistances that make them ineffective. Thus, whereas limited access to antibiotics raises mortality rates from infectious diseases, generalized open access to them ends up eliminating their clinical value. Moreover, the contraction of research in this field for many years has reduced the success in discovering new drugs. Additionally, local market regulations, inadequate selection, inaccessible prices, especially for those of second and third-generation, inefficient health systems, and difficulties of administration and control of prescription compliance, especially in the case of combined therapies, are additional obstacles to universal access to antibiotics. In order to simultaneously improve access to antibiotics and keep resistances under control, it is necessary to develop training and education activities at different social levels (from patients to various Health Care Providers) to complement the national or supranational strategic plans.
doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0089.v1 fatcat:bub3ngk32jdvbhvykspi3abrqi