World Health Organisation (WHO) has classified antibiotics into different groups based on their therapeutic efficacy and to curb the increasing risk of superbug infections. It has asked member-countries, including India, to adopt the classification in their health systems to cut the spread of antimicrobial resistance.
Antibiotics are the most sold drugs segment in India with sales of over Rs 1,000 crore. The WHO classification specifies which antibiotics to use for the most common and serious infections, which ones should be available at all times, and those that must be used as a last resort. The move is significant as the classification makes it easier for policy-makers and medical professionals to select the right antibiotic and protect the endangered antibiotics.