SuperBugs kill 23,000, sicken 2 million, and cost at least $1 billion in the US each year

The CDC has a new report on the impact of drug-resistant pathogens in the US (primarily antibiotic-resistant bacteria).   They find that at a minimum in 2012, drug-resistant germs caused 23,000 deaths, more than 2 million illnesses, and more than $1 billion in excess medical costs.

A few things I found interesting in the report.

1) The rate of antibiotic prescription per person varies widely by state, with states like Mississipi prescribing antibiotics at twice the rate per person as states like California.

2) The pipeline for new antibiotic drugs is looking very very dry.  The number of new antibiotics approved per 5-year period has been dropping over the long term. (The last data point is only a 3 year period, but even adjusting for that, it's a new low.)

3) The antibiotic resistant bacteria c. difficile alone accounts for 14,000 deaths, or more than half the total.  And deaths increased more than 400% between 2000 and 2007.

You can read the CDC's press release abou the report here or download the full report here.