NZ in global antibiotic awareness battle

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NZ in global antibiotic awareness battle

Antibiotics are essential to treat serious bacterial infections, such as meningitis, pneumonia and sepsis, but they are frequently being used to treat illnesses and viral infections.

Suzanne Dougherty, executive vice president of the American Association of Avian Pathologists, noted that most of the antibiotics used in poultry are ionophores, which are not considered by FDA or World Health Organization to be medically important to humans.

Respondents over the age of 75 are the least likely to ask for antibiotics with just 13% saying they'd ask for these medicines to treat a cold or flu.

According to Helperby, fast diagnostic tests, reduced prescribing, better hygiene and infection control, and improved financial incentives could also help combat the antibiotic crisis. That means that antibiotics may not work when you really need them. As a result, many infections have become increasingly hard to cure-making millions of Americans sick and causing tens of thousands of deaths in the United States each year.

"What we want them to realize that antibiotics only work on certain bacteria, not all bacteria you need an antibiotic for", said Deb Roberts, director of nursing for Allen County Public Health.

New Zealand is joining the global battle to raise awareness around appropriate use of antibiotics.

"Without urgent action from all of us, common infections, minor injuries and routine operations will become much riskier". People can hand in their unused or out of date antibiotics at any of the Trust's Lloyds outpatient pharmacies based at St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, Charing Cross Hospital in Hammersmith and Hammersmith Hospital in Acton, until Wednesday 1 December. "Education about the importance of taking antibiotics as recommended by a health professional, not sharing them, and reporting adverse effects, is key to managing the use of antibiotics well".

Without effective antimicrobials for prevention and treatment of infections, medical procedures such as organ transplantation, cancer chemotherapy, diabetes management and major surgery (for example, caesarean sections or hip replacements) become very high risk. But reducing inappropriate use of antibiotics can help us stay ahead of superbugs. "I welcome the launch of the "Keep Antibiotics Working" campaign, and remember that antibiotics are not always needed so always take your doctor's advice".

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