WHO multi-country study reveals people have misunderstandings about antibiotic resistance (16 November 2015)

The World Health Organization (WHO) has released a report on the findings of a multi-country study on antibiotic resistance. The study, commissioned by the WHO, included 2 countries in each WHO region.

The study was conducted in September/October 2015, and included 10,000 people.

The countries included were Barbados, China, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Nigeria, Russian Federation, Serbia, South Africa, Sudan and Viet Nam.

Although the findings of the study cannot be considered to be representative of either each Region or the global situation, they do indicate potential areas for further research and intervention.

Key Findings

76% of respondents think that antibiotic resistance happens when the body becomes resistant to antibiotics. In fact bacteria—not humans or animals—become resistant to antibiotics and their spread causes hard-to-treat infections.

66% of respondents believe that individuals are not at risk of a drug-resistant infection if they personally take their antibiotics as prescribed.

Nearly half (44%) of people surveyed think antibiotic resistance is only a problem for people who take antibiotics regularly. In fact, anyone, of any age, in any country can get an antibiotic-resistant infection.

More than half (57%) of respondents feel there is not much they can do to stop antibiotic resistance, while nearly two thirds (64%) believe medical experts will solve the problem before it becomes too serious.

73% of respondents say farmers should give fewer antibiotics to food-producing animals.

Useful Links:

Link to the WHO news release (Contains country-wise findings):


Link to the full report:



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