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Wyre Forest Clinical Commissioning Group
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 Antibiotics are not always the answer

Antibiotic superhero

Don’t go straight for the antibiotics if you are feeling ill - is the warning from health professionals across Worcestershire.

Many patients ask for antibiotics when visiting their GP as they assume a course of antibiotics is a cure-all solution.

However the overuse of antibiotics can result in infections becoming resistant to the drug so they do not work.

A lot of work is taking place locally to raise awareness of antibiotic use and in November the three Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in Worcestershire (NHS South Worcestershire, NHS Redditch and Bromsgrove and NHS Wyre Forest CCGs) alongside health and social care partners across the county launched the ‘Take Care not Antibiotics – Be a Superhero’ campaign to remind patients of the importance of only taking antibiotics when necessary.

To help prevent the development and spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, patients are encouraged to think about the medicines they are requesting and to remember the following advice:

  • Antibiotics are important medicines and should only be taken when prescribed by a doctor or other health professional when they believe it is appropriate
  • Complete the prescribed course, because not taking the full course encourages the emergence of resistance
  • Antibiotics cannot treat infections caused by viruses, such as common colds or flu, because antibiotics are only effective against bacterial infections
  • Each antibiotic only works against specific types of bacteria, and health professionals are best placed to establish your needs with the available medicines
  • Patients shouldn’t share their antibiotics with anyone else because they are prescribed for them only
  • Resistant bacteria can spread from person to person.

Danielle Clark, Medicines Assurance Pharmacist for the three Worcestershire CCGs said:

“It’s important that patients use antibiotics in the right way ensuring they are only taken when needed to treat specific bacterial infections. Antibiotics can’t help treat colds or flu, in the majority of cases plenty of rest at home, staying well hydrated and other self-help measures are the best cause of action.

“Bacteria can adapt and find ways to survive the effects of an antibiotic. This means antibiotics are losing their effectiveness at an increasing rate. The more we use antibiotics, the greater the chance bacteria will become resistant to them and they can no longer be used to treat infections. 

“Our aim is to highlight the dangers of antibiotic resistance and inform people of the measures that can be taken to help ensure that antibiotics remain effective for us and future generations.”

For more information on staying well this winter visit www.nhs.uk/staywell and for help and advice on antibiotics please talk to your GP or pharmacist.

-Ends-

Notes to editors  
 

  • Partners involved in the awareness campaign are: Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, and Worcestershire County Council
  • For more information about NHS South Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning Group please visit: www.southworcsccg.nhs.uk
  • For more information about NHS Redditch and Bromsgrove CCG Clinical Commissioning Group please visit: www.redditchandbromsgroveccg.nhs.uk 
  • For more information about NHS Wyre Forest Clinical Commissioning Group please visit: www.wyreforestccg.nhs.uk

For further information please contact: