IDPH: Get smart about the use of antibiotics - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

IDPH: Get smart about the use of antibiotics

(Source: Nichole Cartmell/KFVS) (Source: Nichole Cartmell/KFVS)
(KFVS) -

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is is working to promote the appropriate use of antibiotics with its Precious Drugs & Scary Bugs campaign.

According to IDPH, antibiotics are among the most commonly prescribed drugs. However, up to 50 percent of all antibiotics prescribed are not needed or are not effective as prescribed.

In fact, IDPH reports inappropriate antibiotic prescribing drives the evolution of bacteria resistant to antibiotics and undermines the ability to treat common infectious diseases.

Statistics show each year in the United States, at least two million people become infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics and at least 23,000 die as a direct result of these infections.

IDPH is hoping to change that by promoting the appropriate use of antibiotics by both health care providers and patients.

What you can do:

  • Only take antibiotics prescribed for you; do not share or use leftover antibiotics. Never save antibiotics for the next time you become sick.
  • Do not take antibiotics prescribed for someone else.
  • Do not ask for antibiotics when your health care provider thinks you do not need them. Antibiotics have side effects. When your health care provider says you don’t need an antibiotic, taking one may do more harm than good.

IDPH says the key to remember is that antibiotics only fight infections caused by bacteria. Antibiotics will NOT help you feel better if you have a viral infection like a cold or the flu.

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