World Antibiotic Week aiming to handle antibiotics with care

16 November 2015

We are about to enter a post-antibiotic era in which common infections and minor injuries can kill since medicines have lost their effectiveness. Today is the first day of the “World Antibiotic Awareness Week”, aiming to increase awareness of the global antibiotic resistance and to encourage best practices among public, health workers and policy makers to reduce the spread of antibiotic resistance.

During the week, a European Antibiotic Awareness Day will also take place on November 18, arranged by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.

The world’s consumption of antibiotics increased by 30 percent between 2000 and 2010 and is based on data from 71 countries. India, China and USA are the three biggest consumers, according to the report State of the World’s Antibiotics 2015. But the downside of the high and inappropriate use of antibiotics is spurring the spread of multi-resistant bacteria, superbugs, killing thousands of people since common infections no longer are treatable.

Antimicrobial resistance is resistance to an antimicrobial drug, that earlier was effective for treatment of infections. Antibiotic resistance is resistance to antibiotics that occurs in common bacteria causing infections. Ten million people are at risk of dying in 2050, earlier stated in the report Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, if this severe problem is not tackled.

One important action to stop this negative trend is infection prevention, a crucial element when tackling antimicrobial resistance as it reduces the need for antimicrobials. This was also part of the Declaration of the G7 Health Ministers meeting in Berlin in October 2015, stating the support of initiatives that will strengthen infection prevention within the countries.

The theme of the campaign, Handle with Care, is aiming for a more moderate use of antibiotics. The campaign is organized by the World Health Organization (WHO) during 16 – 21 November. It is also part of WHO’s global action, endorsed at the Sixty-eight World Health Assembly in May 2015. Welcome to follow and participate at the global Twitter conversation related to keeping antibiotics effective and antimicrobial resistance by using the hastag #AntibioticResistance. Bactiguard mission is to prevent healthcare associated infections caused by medical devices and thereby we reduce the use of antibiotics, the spread of multi-resistant bacteria and most of all save lives #wepreventhealthcareassociatedinfections.