The next plague will occur in our children’s lifetimes

It is only a matter of time before New Zealand experiences strains of bacteria that are resistant to medicines according to a microbiologist

The Royal Society has released a paper about the growing antimicrobial resistance the country faces, saying the country is not insulated from the problem that is predicted to kill more than 10 million people worldwide a year by 2050.

Expert advisor on the report and University of Auckland microbiologist Siouxsie Wiles said classes of bacteria were becoming more and more resistant and some strains were becoming completely untreatable

“It is a zombie apocalypse arising, it is a crazy thing and we really do need to start thinking about it.”

It’s not a zombie apocalypse.  But once it takes hold, it will become as deadly as Black Death was.  Only those with natural resistance will survive.  Some would say it will be the natural result to over population.  The earth will simply shake 80% of us off.  

Dr Wiles said the bacteria could often affect people who were not well and whose immune system was compromised, but people could also be carriers of them in their noses or guts for instance.

“We actually don’t know how many New Zealanders may already have these very difficult to treat or possibly untreatable strains already because perhaps they’ve done a lot of travel overseas.”

Dr Wiles said the only ones that were known about in this country were the cases that ended up in hospital, and the numbers were growing, going from five in 2012 to about 45 now, although all those cases were treatable by the last-resort antibiotics.

“But we now know that there are strains that are resistant to those last resort antibiotics … it’s only a matter of time before they turn up here.”

They are coming for us, and we can’t even see them.

I think there is some irony in most of us dying from a super bug instead of a nuclear war started by Trump or drowning due to climate change induced sea level rises.



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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.