Pledge to become an 'Antibiotic Guardian'

The medical community and the public in Bradford are being asked to make a stand in the battle against antibiotic resistance.

NHS Bradford City and NHS Bradford Districts Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) are encouraging people to sign up to pledge to become ‘Antibiotic Guardians’ to combat the increasing resistance of diseases to antibiotics and the wider implications to health.

Antibiotics are essential medicines for treating bacterial infections, but they are increasingly losing their effectiveness, as they are being used when they are not needed. Bacteria can adapt and find ways to survive the effects of an antibiotic so that the antibiotic no longer works. The more antibiotics are used, the more bacteria become resistant to it.

Antibiotic guardian 2016

Tracey Gaston, head of medicines management, Bradford CCGs, said: “It’s really important that antibiotics are only used when really necessary. One of the greatest threats to the future health of our population is antibiotic resistance."

“Antibiotics should only be taken as prescribed and never saved for later or shared with others. Not taking antibiotics in the right way – taking the right dose, at the right time for the right duration – increases the chances of developing antibiotic resistance."

There are very few new antibiotics in development. Existing antibiotics should be used wisely so that these life-saving medicines can continue to be effective for future treatment and generations to come. Many antibiotics are used for mild infections when they do not need to be. Mild infections, such as colds and most coughs, sinusitis, earache and sore throats often get better without the need for antibiotics.

The pledge comes in the countdown to European Antibiotic Awareness Day on Friday 18 November, a national campaign by Public Health England.

The Antibiotic Guardian pledge campaign calls on the public and medical community to become antibiotic guardians by choosing one simple pledge about how they will make better use of these vital medicines.

Health professionals and patients can all sign up online