Antibiotic resistance

deaths per year
SAVE targets
of risk of antibiotic resistance controlled

By 2050, antibiotic resistance could become one of the leading causes of death in the world.

  • The discovery of antibiotics has greatly contributed to the increase in life expectancy, but has been accompanied by a worrying and growing increase in bacterial resistance. Although the first resistances were mainly detected in clinical settings, it was very quickly noted that these bacteria were prone to colonize different environments (water, soil, sediments). Today, although the phenomenon is worrying, little is known about the nature of the risks.
  • In France, antibiotic resistance causes 5,543 deaths per year in patients with resistant bacterial infections and 124,806 patients develop an infection linked to resistant bacteria. According to the Ministry of Health, infectious diseases caused by bacteria could once again become one of the leading causes of death in the world by 2050, causing up to 10 million deaths.
  • Urban wastewater is the general receptacle of all the molecules and products linked to the metabolic and economic activities of the city, transporting them to the wastewater treatment plant, which treats part of them before discharge into the environment, mainly surface water. Medicines, including antibiotics, antiseptics, biocides, heavy metals, but also (multi)resistant bacteria and resistance genes, emitted by inhabitants or care institutions, such as hospitals, Home for Senior and Dependent Persons, clinics, are then mixed and confined in the sewerage system until they reach the treatment works, or even the discharge sites.
  • Following cases of infections in the professional population of sewage workers, leading to lifelong disabilities, but also to protect bathers from these antibiotic-resistant bacteria, Denmark has required the country’s main hospitals to treat their effluents.