Regional

21 November 2022

NHS East Riding of Yorkshire and Hull Health and Care Partnerships are encouraging the public and healthcare professionals to become Antibiotic Guardians as part of this year’s World Antimicrobials Awareness Week 18-24 November.

Antibiotics treat infections by killing bacteria, however antibiotics are becoming resistant and less effective which leads to more deaths and more complications for people receiving treatment in hospital. The aim of World Antimicrobials Awareness week is to raise awareness of this issue and encourage people to help tackle the problem before it gets worse.

There are many things people can do to help deal with this challenge. These include:

  • Reduce the chance of catching infections by practicing good hygiene
  • Treat cold and flu symptoms with ‘over the counter’ medicines, not antibiotics
  • Make sure antibiotics are taken as prescribed, never save them for later and never share them with others

Dr James Crick, Consultant in Public Health Medicine/Associate Medical Director, Hull Health and Care Partnership said: “Antibiotics dramatically reduce the number of deaths due to serious infections caused by bacteria.  However, antibiotic resistance is a real and a significant threat to health which means that some antibiotics don’t work as well, or not at all.

“Not all infections respond to antibiotics, in particular viruses. Clinicians are really good at identifying whether antibiotics are required, and why I urge people not to ask for antibiotics for viruses such as cold or flu which can easily be treated with ‘over the counter’ medicines.

“Antibiotics are very successful at treating infections caused by bacteria, however, I would advise that people avoid becoming infected in the first place by simply continuing to wash their hands regularly, remaining at home if they feel unwell, drinking fluids and following the “catch it, bin it, kill it approach to reduce the change of catching something.”

More information can be found online: http://www.eastridingofyorkshireccg.nhs.uk/your-health/antibiotics-awareness/

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