Topic outline

  • Clinical Guidance

  • Equipment

  • Assessment & Examination

  • Antibiotic Awareness Week 13th-19th November

    Key Messages 2017


    • antibiotics are essential medicines for treating bacterial infections in both humans and animals
    • antibiotics are losing their effectiveness at an increasing rate
    • bacteria can adapt and find ways to survive the effects of an antibiotic. They become ‘antibiotic resistant’ so that the antibiotic no longer works. The more you use an antibiotic, the more bacteria become resistant to it
    • antibiotics should be taken as prescribed, never saved for later or shared with others; it is important we use antibiotics in the right way, the right drug, at the right dose, at the right time for the right duration. Appropriate use of antibiotics will slow down the development of antibiotic resistance
    • there are very few new antibiotics in the development pipeline, which is why it is important we use our existing antibiotics wisely and make sure these life-saving medicines continue to stay effective for us, our children and grandchildren
    • the independent review of antimicrobial resistance, the AMR Review1 commissioned by the government in 2014 and chaired by Lord Jim O’Neill, in its analysis of the global issue estimated that a failure to address the problem of antibiotic resistance could result in:
    • an estimated 10 million deaths globally by 2050
    • a cost of £66trillion ($100trillion) to the global economy
    • many antibiotics are prescribed and used for mild infections when they don’t need to be. All colds and most coughs, sinusitis, otitis media (earache) and sore throats get better without antibiotics
    • community pharmacists are well placed to help provide advice on over the counter medicines to treat symptoms and help with self-care
    • Keep Antibiotics Working raises awareness of antibiotic resistance among the general public and encourages greater trust in doctors’ advice when it comes to whether or not to take antibiotics
    • individuals (the public, healthcare professionals, educators and leaders) can take action by choosing a pledge and becoming an Antibiotic Guardian (

  • Further information and resources