The latest English Surveillance Programme for Antimicrobial Utilisation and Resistance (ESPAUR) report from Public Health England (PHE) shows that there were an estimated 61,000 antibiotic resistant infections in England during 2018, which represents a 9% rise from 2017.
Antibiotics are essential in treating serious bacterial infections, and are also used to help ward off infections during chemotherapy, caesarean sections and other surgeries. However, they are still being used to treat less serious illnesses such as coughs, earache and sore throats that often get better by themselves. Taking antibiotics encourages harmful bacteria to become resistant, meaning antibiotics may not work when they are really needed.
The threat of antibiotic resistance is growing and the ESPAUR report shows that antibiotic-resistant bloodstream infections rose by 32% between 2014 and 2018.
In response to this, PHE has re-launched its Keep Antibiotics Working campaign, which aims to alert the public to the risks of antibiotic resistance. The campaign also provides effective self-care advice to help people and their families if they are not prescribed antibiotics. The campaign also includes TV, radio and digital advertising.
Source: PHE, 31 October 2019