Dr. Martin Hash Podcast

Politics & Philosophy by Dr. Martin D. Hash, Esq.

720 Antibiotic Resistance


Virtually all antibiotics have some strain of bacteria that is resistant to them. The theory goes that these resistant strains emerged when people did not take a full course of antibiotics, so blame the patient. If the not-full-course canard is true, antibiotic resistance would come from people who don't have access to cheap antibiotics so they only use 1 or 2 tablets until their symptoms get bearable and they stop because can't they can't afford anymore. If they had a complete course, 12 tablets, they would take them. Nations with socialized medicine have an easy solution: make antibiotics inexpensive and easily available. As an example: a course of Azithromycin in the U.S. costs about $160 and requires a doctor's prescription, but the equivalent in Peru is $1 and is sold over the counter at pharmacies.

There's also another explanation: antibiotic resistance is a statistical observation and could simply be an example of confusing correlation with causation: it seems likely that resistant strains of bacteria have always existed, and with the increasing interactions of people from around the world, they have spread, so antibiotic resistance bacteria would emerge regardless of how many pills are consumed. There is also the charge that antibiotics are overused, especially if they bring up how stupid people don't know antibiotics don't work on viruses even though doctors also can't tell without testing, but this is perhaps a suspicious facade for medical activism: rich nations who use antibiotics are oppressing poor nations that don't by creating resistant strains. It's often difficult to separate medicine from politics, and antibiotic resistance is one of those.


Categories | PRay TeLL, Dr. Hash


Filetype: MP3 - Size: 2.46MB - Duration: 2:41 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)