Antimicrobial resistance, a phenomenon that threatens the effectiveness of antibiotics and other antimicrobial drugs, has become a grave concern worldwide. From its groundbreaking discovery by Alexander Fleming in 1928, antibiotics have played a crucial role in saving countless lives. However, over the past century, misuse and overuse have led to the proliferation of resistant bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites, rendering these drugs ineffective.

Antimicrobial resistance poses significant challenges to public health, with millions of people dying annually due to infections that are no longer treatable. The consequences extend beyond human lives, affecting economies as well. It is estimated that antimicrobial resistance could cost the global economy approximately $3.4 billion annually within the next decade and push 24 million individuals into extreme poverty.

This resistance arises when microorganisms develop the ability to withstand antimicrobial drugs, making traditional treatments ineffective. The misuse and incorrect dosage of antibiotics have accelerated this process, as surviving microbes become the most resistant and continue to reproduce, passing on their resistant characteristics to subsequent generations.

The problem of excessive antibiotic use is not confined to human consumption. The agricultural sector accounts for two-thirds of global antibiotic usage, with antibiotics being used on animals for preventive purposes and to increase livestock numbers. The World Health Organization (WHO) reported that antimicrobial resistance caused 1.27 million deaths directly in 2019, exceeding the mortality rates of HIV and malaria combined.

Alarmingly, this figure is projected to escalate to 10 million deaths annually by 2050. The WHO further states that the consequences of antimicrobial resistance are not limited to human health alone but also impact the global economy. It raises healthcare costs, reduces labor productivity, and exacerbates poverty levels.

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