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Be Antibiotics Aware

Monday, November 13, 2017   (0 Comments)
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Antibiotics Awareness Week, November 13-18

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is advising patients and their families to use antibiotics only when necessary to further reduce antibiotic resistance and the spread of superbugs. To kick off US Antibiotic Awareness Week, CDC launched Be Antibiotics Aware, an educational effort to raise awareness about the importance of safe antibiotic prescribing and use.

   
   

The new Be Antibiotics Aware initiative educates the public about when antibiotics are needed, when they are not, how to take antibiotics appropriately and potential side effects.

CDC encourages patients and families to:

  • Get the facts about antibiotics. Antibiotics do not work on viruses, such as colds and flu, or runny noses, even if the mucus is thick, yellow or green. When antibiotics aren’t needed, they won’t help you, and the side effects could still hurt you.
  • Ask your doctor or nurse about the best way to feel better while your body fights off a virus (pain relievers, fever reducers, saline nasal spray or drops, warm compresses, liquids, and rest may help).
  • If you need antibiotics, take them exactly as prescribed. Talk with your doctor if you have any questions about your antibiotics, or if you develop any of these side effects, especially diarrhea, since that could be a C. difficile (c. diff) infection, which needs to be treated. Shortening the duration of antibiotic therapy to the minimum effective duration is a key antibiotic stewardship strategy in all settings of health care. The goal is to maximize the benefit to the patient by curing the infection while at the same time minimizing the risks of side effects from antibiotics and antibiotic resistance.
  • Stay healthy and keep others healthy by cleaning hands, covering coughs, staying home when sick, and getting recommended vaccines, for the flu, for example.

Patients and families are encouraged to use the educational materials and learn more about Be Antibiotics Aware by visiting: www.cdc.gov/antibiotic-use.


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