By: Rebecca Cerio
Our weekly linkpost, bringing you interesting and informative links on science policy issues buzzing about the internet.
Alarming Pattern of Antibiotic Use Emerges - Antibiotic use is up, particularly in certain parts of the country like the Southeast. Is this use responsible, or are we overprescribing antibiotics for illnesses that they cannot treat (like colds and the flu)? As antibiotic overuse can lead to pathogens developing antibiotic resistance, the Extending the Cure project suggests that the driving forces behind increased antibiotic use should be investigated. (press release via the Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics & Policy, by Andrea Titus)
Why Science Majors Change Their Minds (It’s Just So Darn Hard) – “…middle and high school students are having most of the fun, building their erector sets and dropping eggs into water to test the first law of motion. The excitement quickly fades as students brush up against the reality of what David E. Goldberg, an emeritus engineering professor, calls “the math-science death march.” Freshmen in college wade through a blizzard of calculus, physics and chemistry in lecture halls with hundreds of other students. And then many wash out.” (via The New York Times, by Christopher Drew)
Switching from Intravenous to Oral Medications Can Save Millions – Researchers at Johns Hopkins Hospital found that switching hospitalized patients from an intravenous to an equivalent oral version of just four expensive medications could save over a million dollars a year. They suggest that widespread education and reminders to doctors to prescribe the cheaper oral form of medications to eligible patients could save billions in health care costs annually. (via Futurity.org, by Stephanie Desmond)
Have an interesting science policy link to share? Let us know in the comments!