18 November 2021
Antimicrobials are essential to treat serious infections caused by microorganisms such as bacteria and viruses. Unfortunately the more we use antimicrobials the less effective they become. The more bacteria are exposed to antibiotics, the more likely they are to become resistant. This means that antibiotics eventually stop working, certain infections become harder to treat, which increases the risk of severe illness, disease spread and even death.
It is vital that antimicrobials are only used when they are needed.
Antimicrobial Resistance is one of the most urgent global threats to the public’s health. We all have a part to play in tackling antimicrobial resistance.
We can do this by:
- Preventing infections from happening in the first place by practicing good Infection Prevention and Control, good hand hygiene and adhering to requirements such as bare below the elbow rules.
- Ensuring that we only use antibiotics when they are needed and not for self-limiting or viral infections or on a ‘just in case’ basis
- Following evidence-based Antimicrobial Prescribing Guidance when an antimicrobial is needed.
- Taking antibiotics exactly as prescribed and not saving antibiotics for later. We should also encourage others to do the same
- Promote Antimicrobial Stewardship within our teams by influencing prescribing practices of colleagues.
World Antimicrobial Awareness Week aims to increase awareness and knowledge of this important issue – You can take part by:
- Circulating this message to your colleagues and discuss at your team meetings
- Display this poster in your work areas and discuss at meetings
- Making or renewing your Antibiotic Guardian pledge and encourage your colleagues/friends/family members to do the same!
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