Paris: germinal infections It is the second leading cause of death worldwide, accounting for one in eight of all deaths in 2019, the first global estimate of just how powerful it is revealed on Tuesday.
The massive new study, published in Lancet magazine, looked at deaths from 33 rumors bacterial Pathogens and 11 infections in 204 countries and territories.
Pathogens were associated with 7.7 million deaths – 13.6% of the global total – in 2019, the year before the COVID-19 pandemic hit.
This made them the second leading cause of death after ischemic heart disease, which includes heart attacks, the study said.
Only five of the 33 bacteria were responsible for half of those deaths: Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Staphylococcus aureus is a bacteria that is common in human skin and gills but causes a range of illnesses, while Escherichia coli commonly causes food poisoning.
The study was conducted as part of the Global Burden of Disease Program, a massive research program funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and involving thousands of researchers worldwide.
“These new data reveal for the first time the full extent of the global public health challenge posed by bacterial infections,” said Christopher Murray, study co-author and director of the US-based Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation.
“It is critical to put these findings on the radar of global health initiatives so that a deeper dive into these deadly pathogens and appropriate investments can be made to reduce the number of deaths and injuries.”
The research points to stark differences between poor and affluent regions.
In sub-Saharan Africa, there have been 230 deaths per 100,000 population due to bacterial infections.
That number dropped to 52 per 100,000 in what the study called the “super-high-income region,” which included countries in Western Europe, North America and Australia.
The authors called for increased funding, including for new vaccines, to reduce the number of deaths, and also warned against “undue use of antibiotics.”
Hand washing is among the recommended measures to prevent infection.