Australians' knowledge of antibiotic resistance better but not enough


Pfizer Pakistan in recognition of World Antibiotic Awareness Week, which is celebrated from November 12 to 18, reaffirmed its commitment to working with the industry partners and policymakers to help prevent and combat the global public health threat of antimicrobial resistance.

Many antibiotics are no longer effective in fighting infections as those infections have built up resistance to the medication. "That is why we urge patients to take every precaution to reduce the chances of developing antibiotic-resistant infections".

Antibiotic resistance is a growing and serious health problem.

However, unwillingness or unpreparedness of any individual or organisation to act or react would not deter the overuse of antibiotics becoming a much bigger problem.

In a first, the United Nations health agency said it had collated data on antibiotic use across large parts of the world and had found huge differences in consumption.

Antimicrobials are widely used in livestock production, sometimes to promote growth and sometimes to prevent infection, rather than treating the animal. On the other hand, "reserve" antibiotics - powerful last resort antibiotics used to treat hard cases of multidrug resistant bacteria - made up only 2% of total antibiotic consumption.

Staff and students are invited to drop off any unwanted antibiotics at the stands on each of the days, with the drugs disposed of by the HPRU in Healthcare Associated Infections and Antimicrobial Resistance team.

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The main message of this year's WAAW is 'handle antibiotics with care.' World Health Organization is focusing on food safety while OIE will be promoting prudent and responsible use of antimicrobials in animals.

While it is positive to see more Australians aware of antibiotic resistance alongside a reduction in inappropriate prescribing, Mr Morris says the research also indicates many people lack awareness of the potential consequences antibiotic resistance can have on their health. Experts speaking at a seminar, organised in Dhaka early this week in observance of the "World Antibiotic Awareness Week-2018", outlined the dangers of indiscriminate use of antibiotics. One of the aims of the event is to start a conversation about why people need to change their behaviours and attitudes towards antibiotics.

Resistance to broad spectrum Fluoroquinolones and third-generation cephalosporin was reported to be higher than 50 per cent in most common pathogenic bacteria. A patient does not have to produce any prescription to buy or drugstore people need not be registered doctors to prescribe antibiotics.

Antibiotic-resistant bacteria are here. Bacteria, not humans or animals, become antibiotic-resistant.

"However, the GHA carried out its own study into this subject in 2014 and, since that time, it has formulated and implemented different initiatives to curb and rationalise its own antibiotic prescribing".

From 2019, antimicrobial consumption data will be integrated into WHO's Global Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance System (GLASS) IT platform to provide a single place for data on both consumption and resistance.

Never share or use leftover antibiotics.