By Rachel Feltman

With very few new antibiotics remotely close to entering public markets, the global superbug situation outlined by the WHO recently is looking increasingly dire.

Compounding the issue of increasingly resistant superbugs, is the reluctance of traditional pharmaceutical companies to develop new antibiotics, as a result of a lack of significant financial incentives. As a result, some industry insiders have suggested “delinking” antibiotics from their future sales.

One academic, Kevin Outterson, a health policy expert at the Boston University School of Law, has suggested that pharmaceutical companies should be given upfront payments for newly approved antibiotics, rather than relying on the current model.

This model, however potentially beneficial, may be a difficult one for the public to digest.

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