risks Lack of antibiotics could have life-threatening consequences in some children
A box of amoxicillin. — FRED SCHEIBER/SIPA
Doctors are sounding the alarm. The lack of amoxicillin, one of the most widely used antibiotics in children, risks leading to a major health crisis within a few days. public, even worse than bronchiolitis, estimated this Tuesday the main organizations of pediatricians and infectiologists. “All the conditions are in place for a major health crisis. public in pediatrics (within) a few days,” these organizations, which include the Société; French Pediatrics (SFP) and the Societé; of infectious pathology in the French language.
According to them, this crisis could be even worse than the bronchiolitis epidemic, which is proving to be particularly violent this year and is already the health system to tough test. The risk could be higher “in terms of morbidity and mortality”. In other words, the lack of antibiotics could have fatal consequences in some children.
Health authorities took note last week of “serious supply tensions” on amoxicillin, by far the most prescribed antibiotic for children. It is intended to fight against a series of bacterial infections such as certain ear infections and pneumonia. For the moment, it is in its syrup form, mainly used in children, that amoxicillin is lacking. But doctors fear that the shortage will spill over to all of these antibiotics. “The stocks of alternatives to the pediatric forms of amoxicillin will not last beyond that. weeks,” they note.
“Drastic restriction” amoxicillin prescription
By extension, the “ adult” of this antibiotic could therefore their turn to start to lack. In the longer term, doctors even fear a shortage of “remedy” drugs, offered as a second choice when amoxicillin is lacking. They consider the measures taken by the authorities, which have notably limited the quantity of amoxicillin that pharmacists can dispense to each patient. A “drastic restriction” the prescription of this antibiotic, if necessary by directly imposing constraints on doctors. They also call for that the precise diagnosis is given; on prescriptions.
Antibiotics, which have no benefit against bronchiolitis, for example, tend to be prescribed far too widely, and the authorities have already asked physicians to exercise discernment. But “it will probably be necessary to revise a large number of recommendations and apply them in a more restrictive way,” for organizations of pediatricians and infectious disease specialists.