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Antibiotics and similar drugs, together called antimicrobial agents, have been used for the last 70 years to treat patients who have infectious diseases. Since the 1940s, these drugs have greatly reduced illness and death from infectious diseases. However, these drugs have been used so widely and for so long that the infectious organisms the antibiotics are designed to kill have adapted to them, making the drugs less effective.

Each year in the United States, at least 2 million people become infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics and at least 23,000 people die each year as a direct result of these infections.

CDC's Role

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Surveillance, Labs Research, and Prevention
Drug Resistance Tracking and Surveillance (CDC's Role)

FDA-CDC Antimicrobial Resistance Bank

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The AR Isolate Bank offers panels of resistant bacteria, which can be used to challenge diagnostic devices and new antibiotic agents.

Transatlantic Taskforce on Antimicrobial Resistance (TATFAR)

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TATFAR brings U.S. and European Union government agencies together to combat antimicrobial resistance.