Back to news

Keep Antibiotics Working – Antibiotic Awareness Week (13th to 19th November)

 

5,000 deaths are caused every year in England because antibiotics no longer work for some infections. Experts predict that in just over 30 years antibiotic resistance will kill more people than cancer and diabetes combined. Public Health England (PHE)'s  #KeepAntibioticsWorking campaign encourages the public to take their doctor's advice on antibiotics.  We all have a part to play in tackling antibiotic resistance.

Antibiotic resistance is a major global health crisis and we all have a role to play in preserving this precious resource. The 'Keep Antibiotics Working' campaign urges the public to always trust their doctor, nurse or pharmacist's advice [amend as appropriate] as to when they need antibiotics and if they are prescribed, to take antibiotics as directed and never save them for later use or share them with others. #KeepAntibioticsWorking.


Dr Sebastian Kalwij, local GP and Clinical Director at NHS Lewisham CCG says: "Most common infections, like the cold and the flu are caused by viruses. Antibiotics won't work against these type of infections. In fact taking them when you do not need them puts you and your family at risk as this can encourage harmful bacteria that live inside you to become resistant and thus more potent. That means that in future antibiotics may not work when you really need them.  This is even more likely for children who have taken antibiotics. As doctors we are running out of ammunition as no new types of antibiotics have been developed over the last few decades so we have to use the current ones with great care. Please trust your doctor's advice on antibiotics and only use them when really needed".

 

We have seen positive results in the number of antibiotic prescriptions dispensed in General Practice having decreased by 13% between 2012 and 2016. You have a critical part to play in this positive movement helping to preserve antibiotics. #KeepAntibioticsWorking