While plague in Madagascar is not unusual, the 2017 Madagascar plague outbreak was one of the most severe in recent history. As serious as this public health threat is, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are trying to calm the hysteria being fueled by exaggerated claims in popular media.
While we continue to overuse and misuse a great deal of antibiotics, we have not significantly increased the overall number of antibiotic prescriptions in the U.S. during the last decade. So why are we seeing such a rapid increase in new mechanisms of resistance among microbes, especially bacteria?
No matter how cutting-edge a new microbiology detection technology is, healthcare institutions will fail to curtail resistance if that technology is not used as a part of a larger antibiotic stewardship effort.