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Infectious Conversations: Getting a Grip on How to #SquashSuperbugs

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As we continue to encourage urgency and action on the problem of antimicrobial resistance, the Partnership to Fight Infectious Disease (PFID) is convening discussions among health care professionals, policy experts and others to help underscore the threat AMR poses as “the next pandemic,” the need to address it now, and how we can build on lessons learned throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and other experiences.

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Episode 6: How Dr. Strathdee Helped Save Her Husband’s Life

 

In the newest episode of Infectious Conversations, Candace chats with Dr. Steffanie Strathdee: an infectious disease epidemiologist, the Associate Dean of Global Health Sciences at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine, and Co-director at the Center for Innovative Phage Applications and Therapeutics (IPATH). Dr. Strathdee relied on her extensive knowledge of infectious diseases to help save her husband’s life using phage therapy after he developed a life-threatening, drug-resistant infection in 2016. The couple later wrote a book together titled “The Perfect Predator: A Scientist’s Race to Save Her Husband from a Deadly Superbug,” which was published in 2019. To contact IPATH, email ipath@ucsd.edu.

Episode 5: CARB-X & Sepsis Awareness Month

 

Our newest episode of Infectious Conversations is a discussion with Dr. Erin Duffy, Chief of Research and Development at CARB-X, a global nonprofit partnership that supports companies developing antibiotics, vaccines, diagnostics, and non-traditional products to address resistant bacterial infections and sepsis. Dr. Duffy explains the problems with the current pipeline for antimicrobial medications and how CARB-X functions to help supply funding to companies that are working to bring the latest innovations to patients. But, she says, push incentives like the direct grant money CARB-X and others provide isn’t enough if there is no market or pull incentives on the other side. An important focus of CARB-X’s research is sepsis, and during Sepsis Awareness Month in September, it’s especially important to raise awareness of the dangers of sepsis and highlight the work being done to better prevent, diagnose, and treat these life-threatening infections. Visit carb-x.org to learn more and join the conversation on social with #SepsisAwarenessMonth.

Episode 4: Sepsis Alliance

 

In this installment of Infectious Conversations, we sit down with Dr. Sandy Cayo and Tom Heymann of Sepsis Alliance. Sepsis is a serious and often fatal condition that is closely related to antimicrobial resistance, and our esteemed guests on the podcast tell us more about the ties between sepsis and health equity issues, as well as what can be done to help prevent and effectively treat sepsis in the future. For more information, visit sepsis.org and to learn about Sepsis Alliance's pledge for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, go to healthequitypledge.org.

Episode 3: Peggy Lillis Foundation

 

In this episode, Candace DeMatteis interviews Christian Lillis, cofounder of the Peggy Lillis Foundation. Christian and his brother Liam started the foundation to advocate for greater awareness of Clostridioides difficile, or C. diff, a deadly superbug that claimed the life of their mother, Peggy. By educating the public, empowering advocates, and shaping policy, the Peggy Lillis Foundation aims to help create a world in which C. diff is rare, treatable, and survivable. Tune in to hear Peggy's story and learn more about what we can do to address the ongoing threat of antimicrobial resistance. For more information about PLF and their incredible work, visit peggyfoundation.org or find them on Twitter at @peggyfund

Episode 2: Healthcare's Fire Extinguishers

 

Episode 2 features two special guests who are important leaders in the fight against AMR. Michael Craig joins us from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where he develops and guides CDC's strategic direction to address national goals to combat antibiotic resistance. John Rex is a physician and drug developer with 30+ years of development and policy experience focused on antimicrobial agents. Candace asks these experts about their experiences so far and what more needs to be done to prepare for the threats AMR poses - including a helpful analogy about fires and the trusted tools we use to extinguish them.

Episode 1: The Global Burden of AMR

 

Our first segment features a discussion about the recent report published in The Lancet "Global burden of bacterial antimicrobial resistance in 2019: a systematic analysis" and discussed in depth on Friday, February 4th at The Global Research on Antimicrobial Resistance (GRAM) Findings Launch. Our host, PFID’s Vice President of Policy and Advocacy, Candace DeMatteis chats with experts Helen Boucher, Mary Dwight, and Kevin Outterson.

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