CPFT support Antibiotic Awareness week

Senior health bosses at Cumbria Partnership NHS are supporting antibiotics awareness week as part of the Stay Well This Winter Campaign.
Antibiotics are medicines that can kill or slow the growth of bacteria to cure bacterial infections. Increasing resistance to antibiotics is developing worldwide. Cumbria is no exception, if we don’t do something about it our ability to fight infection will become dangerously fragile.

 

Dr John Howarth, Deputy Chief Executive and GP explains:

Increasing antibiotic resistance is one of the greatest challenges we have in medicine. We need to keep antibiotics for when we really need them. Most coughs and colds and even ear infections in winter are caused by viruses and don’t respond to antibiotics. Widespread use of antibiotics for coughs and cold just increases antibiotic resistance. They also kill off your natural bacteria which can take many weeks to recover.

 

 Dr Andrew Brittlebank, Medical Director adds:

The worry is that some bacteria may eventually become resistant to all existing antibiotics. Without antibiotics, we could return to the “pre-antibiotic era”, when organ transplants, cancer chemotherapy, intensive care and other medical procedures would no longer be possible. Bacterial diseases would spread and could no longer be treated, causing death.

Keeping antibiotics effective is everyone’s responsibility. Responsible use of antibiotics can help stop resistant bacteria from developing and help keep antibiotics effective for the use of future generations. On this basis, it is important to known when it is appropriate to take antibiotics and how to take antibiotics responsibly.

Try this quiz developed by the World Health Organisation to find out how much you know about antibiotics.

Always follow your doctor’s advice on when and how to use antibiotics.