The White House wants a national plan to combat antibiotic resistance by February of next year.

For years, scientists have been warning about the effect of overuse of antibiotics, which makes microbes stronger and resistant to many of our first, second and even third-line drugs.

The government has now formed a task force to examine the problem and identify ways to fight superbugs.

“We must recognize that a robust pipeline of new investigational antimicrobials does not currently exist — nor are there a large number of drug discovery laboratories out there working to bring forth the next generation of candidate drugs,” Dr. Janet Woodcock from the Food and Drug Administration said.

The White House also announced a $20-million prize to help develop rapid diagnostics tests for highly resistant bacteria.

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