Next week the annual Get Smart About Antibiotics Week will be observed to raise awareness of antibiotic resistance and the importance of appropriate antibiotic prescribing and use.
The event from Nov. 16-22, 2015 is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) strategy to improve antibiotic stewardship in communities, in healthcare facilities, and on the farm in collaboration with state-based programs, nonprofit partners, and for-profit partners.
The observance is an international collaboration, coinciding with:
The use of antibiotics is the single most important factor leading to antibiotic resistance around the world. Antibiotics are among the most commonly prescribed drugs used in human medicine. However, up to 50% of all the antibiotics prescribed for people are not needed or are not optimally effective as prescribed. Antibiotics are also commonly used for promoting growth in food animals, one type of use that is not necessary.
Each year in the United States, at least 2 million people become infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics and at least 23,000 people die as a direct result of these infections. Many more people die from other conditions that were complicated by an antibiotic-resistant infection.
The one-week observance raises awareness of the threat of antibiotic resistance and the importance of appropriate antibiotic prescribing and use.
Source: CDC, adapted.