What We’re Reading: Spurring Development of Antibiotics; Legislation to Protect IVF; Vaccine Misinformation Poses Threat


Bipartisan lawmakers aim to pass bill that could incentivize development of new antibiotics; the right to use in vitro fertilization (IVF) may be enshrined in law; CDC director says that vaccine misinformation is a public health threat.

Bill Focuses on Development of Antibiotics

A bipartisan group of lawmakers is aiming to pass a bill that would fund the development of antibiotics for pathogens that are resistant to current drugs, according to Kaiser Health News. The PASTEUR Act would give $6 billion in federal funding to incentivize drugmakers to develop lifesaving medications to treat infections that are resistant to current antibiotics. The act has received support from the health care and drug industries, as it could provide stable funding for an area that may not have been viewed as a good business opportunity. However, some believe that this act would represent a giveaway to the pharmaceutical industry.

Protection for IVF Could Be Decided in Senate

The Right to Build Families Act, introduced by Senators Tammy Duckworth and Patty Murray and Representative Susan Wild, could be a way to legally protect the right for families to use in vitro fertilization (IVF), according to USA Today. The overturning of Roe v Wade threw into question the validity of IVF in the long term. The CDC approximates that IVF is responsible for 84,000 babies per year. Several states with abortion bans do not explicitly make an exception for IVF, which has drawn concern from supporters. The Right to Build Families Act would ban any limits on receiving or seeking assisted reproductive therapy.

CDC Head Deems Vaccine Misinformation a Public Health Crisis

The director of the CDC, Rochelle Walensky, MD, said that misinformation about vaccines is among the biggest challenges in public health, according to NBC News. The Kaiser Family Foundation found that 28% of adults were against children entering kindergarten being required to receive certain vaccines, which is an increase from 16% of adults in 2019. There was also an increase in the percentage of parents who believed that there shouldn’t be vaccine requirements in school, with 35% of parents believing it should be the decision of the parents, up from 23% in 2019.

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