How to Survive the End of Modern Healthcare As We Know It
Across the United States, 23,000 people will die in the next 365 days.
And they’ll never see their killer coming.
Many of them will walk into their local hospital, expecting treatment for minor injuries like cuts or breaks… or routine procedures like colonoscopies or caesarean sections or day surgeries.
And they’ll never walk out.
Superbugs, stronger than any antibiotic we can throw at them, are spreading faster than we have the capacity to fight back. 2 million people will be infected in the United States this year alone. 23,000 will die.
And similar death tolls are being reported around the world:
25,000 in Europe this year.
With an estimated 10 million deaths per year, globally, predicted by 2050 — more than the current global death totals from cancer.
The situation has become so grim that in October 2015, the World Health Organization declared it “a global health crisis… the end of modern medicine as we know it.”
The End of Modern Medicine As We Know It
The glory days of antibiotics are over.
Since penicillin was first prescribed 73 years ago, it has saved millions of lives.
But now it’s clear, thanks to the unrestrained use of antibiotics, we’ve unwittingly helped nature breed dangerous strains of superbugs that are, quite literally, killing us.
Our medical system is being driven back to the late 1800s – a time when simple infections kill. And health experts around the globe are beginning to panic, as they’re being backed into corners by strains of superbugs now immune to all known antibiotic treatments.
Doctors are being forced to cut out infections, amputate, and, in worst case scenarios, watch their patients die slow, agonizing deaths.
In October 2015, the World Health Organization went boldly on record, saying:
“With few replacement products in the pipeline, the world is heading towards a post-antibiotic era in which common infections will once against kill.”
– Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General, WHO
Antibiotics have been prescribed as blanket cure-alls by doctors… demanded and popped like candy by the general populace for every sniffle, ache, and pain… and wildly abused by the agriculture industry to boost profits.
And now the human race will pay the ultimate price for our heedless arrogance.
Mother Nature Always Wins
It’s survival of the fittest, a battle being waged at the microscopic level.
And right now, Mother Nature is winning.
All because bacteria, hundreds of millions of years old, evolve far too fast for medical science to keep up.
Multi-year clinical trials of new antibiotics are laughable when battling a bacterial enemy that can exponentially reproduce in as little as four minutes.
How do you fight back against a single bacteria that can multiply to one million cells in as little as seven hours? Passing along resistant traits to offspring with each new generation?
More frightening still, scientists are seeing bacteria pass resistant traits between completely unrelated strains like trading cards. (Imagine a chameleon passing its survival skills to a monkey, and vice versa — in a single generation.)
Bacteria are even arming against antibiotic threats they haven’t encountered yet!
The ongoing use and abuse of antibiotics is quite literally teaching bacteria how to thrive in the presence of new antibiotics – creating superbugs. And now, too late, health and disease control organizations from around the world are sounding the alarm. Because too many of our medical advances are wholly dependent on antibiotics to fight and prevent infection.
Lifesaving surgeries. Organ transplants. Chemotherapy.
Death rates are predicted to skyrocket. Treatment options are vanishing.
The Spreading Plague of Superbugs
Every day, you’ll find new reports of superbugs snuffing out lives.
The stories all sound eerily similar: a mom or child or friend goes to the doctor for routine medical care… becomes infected by a superbug… finds themselves fighting for their life… and, too often, loses the battle.
A few recent stories include:
“Melbourne footballer survives rare superbug which ‘ate’ his legs.”
(Oct 19, 2015; 9NEWS.com.au)
“Superbug infection greatest increase in children ages 1-5”
(Oct 20, 2015; Rush University Medical Center)
“Surge in the number of cases of terrifying hospital superbug after NHS relaxes hygiene rules”
(Sept 27, 2015; DailyMail.co.uk)
“‘Superbug’ Infection Could Cost NY Giants Player His Foot”
(Oct 13, 2015; Scientific American)
“Patient Infected With Superbug At Local Hospital Speaks Of His Ordeal”
(Sept 21, 2015; CBS Los Angeles)
“Superbug Virus 2015: CDC Warns Of New Antibiotic-Resistant Infection, An Emerging Threat”
(Oct 7, 2015; Parent Herald)
… The safety net of modern health care is clearly at risk.
Take, for example, urinary tract infections (UTIs).
Getting a UTI used to be “no big deal.” You’d get a diagnosis from your doctor, take the prescribed drug, and within 48 hours you’d be back to normal. Within a week you were usually cured.
UTIs are quickly becoming resistant to most standard antibiotic treatments. Which means they’re resulting in life-threatening kidney infections… with deadly results.
Other common superbugs that are rapidly spreading include:
• MRSA, an antibiotic-resistant form of Staph. Known to cause pneumonia and life-threatening blood infections, MRSA is easily picked up by patients in hospitals and care facilities. Controlling the spread is challenging.
• CRE (Carbapenem-resistant Enterbacteriaceae). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it kills almost 50% of hospital patients infected.
• C. diff (Clostridium difficile). It causes debilitating diarrhea, can eat through a patient’s bowels, and causes blood poisoning. C. diff spreads easily on bed rails, furniture, toilets, bedpans weight scales, medical equipment, etc.
• Shigella is a highly contagious bacteria brought back to the US by overseas travelers that’s now resistant to multiple strains of antibiotics. It easily spreads in public facilities — like pools.
• An extensively drug-resistant form of highly contagious Tuberculosis (MDR-TB) has been identified in over 100 countries, in all regions of the world.
• A drug-resistant form of Malaria is threatening to outpace global efforts to control an outbreak.
And these are just a handful of the better-known risks.
The list of superbugs with limited treatment options is growing. Quickly.
The Cavalry Isn’t Coming
And unfortunately, there’s no hero on the horizon to save us.
It’s expensive to develop new antibiotics. It takes roughly 20 years to see a return on the investment, and some of these new drugs work for as little as six months before bacteria develop a resistance.
So it should come as no surprise, fewer and fewer drug companies are investing in antibiotic research and development.
Scientists are becoming increasingly concerned and pressuring governments to “do something.” So governments are trying to incentivize drug companies to “please take another look” with cash injections. But it’s business. And the few corporations willing to take the bribes aren’t moving fast enough.
Roughly 50 new drugs were introduced in the 80s and 90s. Now, there are very few in the pipeline. And most drugs introduced since the year 2000 are modified versions of existing drugs, not new drugs.
Plus, changes aren’t happening fast enough, on a global scale, to stem the tide of growing antibiotic resistance.
As the World Health Organization has pointed out, we’re not reacting fast enough, on a global scale, to contain the spread of superbugs and antimicrobial resistance.
The bacteria spread too easily, through poor sanitation, human error, inappropriate food handling, and more.
At the most recent World Health Assembly held in Geneva (May 2015), the problem was declared:
“A profound threat to human health.”
This is, no doubt, an understatement.
Learn To Save Yourself… And The Ones You Love
So how do you protect yourself?
And prepare for the predicted post-antibiotic era?
There are a few steps you can take:
1. Avoid the unnecessary use of antibiotics.
This should go without saying… But don’t contribute to the global problem by using antibiotics if there is another treatment option available. Be proactive. Let your doctor know that you are concerned about antibacterial resistance. Encourage sparing use of prescription of drugs. Be part of the solution!
2. Avoid purchasing meat treated with antibiotics.
The overuse of antibiotics by large-scale livestock operations continues to be the largest single abuse of antibiotics worldwide. And while some will have you believe their meat, sold in stores, is free of antibiotics, this doesn’t address the issue that livestock treated with antibiotics contributes to the global problem of antibiotic resistance.
(Plus you should be aware, in August 2015, a test by Consumer Reports showed that 18% of conventionally raised ground beef, purchased at stores across the United States, was tainted with bacteria resistant to three or more classes of antibiotics.)
What’s the solution? Eat less meat. Raise your own meat. And when this isn’t practical, purchase locally where you can ask questions about the use of antibiotics.
And if you’re a vegetarian, be aware that produce grown in animal manure from farms where antibiotics are administered may be contaminated with antibiotic resistant bacteria, too.
3. Pay attention to where your food and water is coming from.
Scientists are sounding the alarm, with recent evidence that our wastewater treatment plants may be a primary breeding ground for resistant bacteria.
Antibiotics expelled from humans as well as farm run off create a survival-of-the-fittest scenario where superbugs can share resistant traits.
So pay close attention to where your food and water is coming from:
• Where is the fertilizer used on your produce sourced? Did you know that “sludge” from wastewater treatment plants is being used as fertilizer for agriculture crops?
• What’s the water source? Again, water from rivers downstream of wastewater treatment plants is shown to be contaminated with antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
Wastewater treatment plants are a primary source of antibiotic release!
4. Stay away from healthcare facilities where superbugs breed.
Hospitals, doctors’ offices, care homes, and other patient intake facilities are the perfect breeding ground for superbugs. Human error and carelessness spreads bacteria within these facilities at an alarming rate.
Avoid unnecessary exposure to bacteria in these facilities!
This means not rushing into the doctor’s office at the first sign of a sniffle. Give your body’s immune system a chance to fight off the infection – without drugs.
And STAY HEALTHY. Eat clean, unprocessed, local foods. Move your body. Remember, the healthcare system that kept your parents and grandparents alive will look very different as you age.
(DISCLAIMER: Use common sense. If you’re having a serious medical emergency, a hospital visit may mean the difference between life and death.)
5. Most important…
Learn to treat yourself with herbal medicine!
With major health organizations predicting death and disease levels comparable to those in the 1800s as superbugs continue to spread around the world, we need to be prepared to look after ourselves.
This is when knowledge of herbal medicine once again becomes priceless.
Because while it’s easy for bacteria to evolve and develop a resistance to single-compound antibiotics, it’s much harder for the same bacteria to outmaneuver the more complex compounds found in herbs.
In herbals you’ll find between 200 and 2000 different compounds working together!
Plants have evolved over hundreds of millions of years with their own combinations of antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral and insecticidal compounds.
So it only makes sense…
… Ancient wisdom that uses combinations of natural herbals to treat infection can, in fact, be more effective than single-compound or even multi-compound antibiotics!
And it’s for this reason, a group of us connected via The [GROW] Network are currently collaborating with some of the most knowledgeable herbalists in the United States to produce a lifesaving video series…
… To teach people without any medical training how to treat common illnesses and injuries with herbal alternatives to antibiotics.
And empower you!
So that before death comes knocking…
And before you are backed into a corner and forced to take someone you love into a superbug-plagued hospital because you didn’t know what to do…
… You’ll have learned the secrets to using Mother Nature’s natural antibiotics and remedies to confidently treat simple health concerns at home. With herbals found or grown in your own neighborhood. Or, purchased from a local herbalist.
If you’re interested, you can watch a preview of the movie here:
We’re offering a series of generous gifts as “thank yous” to people who support our early efforts via this Indiegogo release.
Sources for this article include:
Antibacterial R&D Incentives
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: HAI Prevalence Study
Cleaning up a breeding ground for antimicrobial resistance
European Medicines Agency: Antimicrobial resistance
Global Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance System: Manual for Early Implementation
How Safe Is Your Ground Beef?
Insights into Antibiotic Resistance Through Metagenomic Approaches
Jim O’Neill: Why antimicrobial resistance needs to be reviewed
Just How Fast Can Bacteria Grow? It Depends. Proteomics Data Validate Model of Bacterial Growth
Multidrug-resistant Shigellosis Spreading in the United States
New Superbug Infection Spikes Worry Nursing Homes, CDC
Origins and Evolution of Antibiotic Resistance
The Coming Cost of Superbugs: 10 Million Deaths Per Year
The evolving threat of antimicrobial resistance: Options for action
The Rise of Superbugs
UTIs Are Getting Tougher To Treat
White House announces plan to fight antibiotic-resistant bacteria
WHO Director-General addresses G7 health ministers meeting on antimicrobial resistance
Marjory Wildcraft is an Expedition Leader and Bioneer Blogger with The [Grow] Network, which is an online community that recognizes the wisdom of “homegrown food on every table.” Marjory has been featured as an expert on sustainable living by National Geographic, she is a speaker at Mother Earth News fairs, and is a returning guest on Coast to Coast AM. She is an author of several books, but is best known for her “Grow Your Own Groceries” video series, which is used by more than 300,000 homesteaders, survivalists, universities, and missionary organizations around the world.