CAPT. Chew: The misuse of antibiotics has contributed to one of the world’s most pressing public health problems today -- antibiotic resistance.
Hi, I’m Captain Catherine Chew and this is Drug Info Rounds, brought to you by the pharmacists in FDA’s Division of Drug Information.
The FDA has teamed up with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and is asking you, the nation’s pharmacists, to encourage the appropriate use of antibiotics.
Today, I’m joined by my colleague, Lieutenant Zachary Oleszczuk, who is here to tell us more about how pharmacists can help their patients get smart about antibiotic use.
Lt. Olesczcuk: Antibiotic resistance is a growing public health concern worldwide. Patients and pharmacists can play an important role in combating antibiotic resistance. Pharmacists can help their patients get smart about antibiotic use by teaching three key messages:
Antibiotics are drugs that fight infections caused by bacteria.
Antibiotics are powerful drugs, but they are not the cure for all that ails you.
Antibiotics are not effective against viral infections like the common cold, most sore throats, and the flu.
Pharmacists should keep handouts about antibiotics at their practice site from reliable Web sites. The CDC, NIH, and FDA all have consumer-friendly information you can share with your patients.
Materials from the CDC’s Get Smart Web page cover respiratory illnesses; what everyone should know and do if they have a cold or the flu; symptom relief; questions and answers about bacteria, viruses, antibiotics and resistance; and fast facts about how patients can help prevent antibiotic resistance.
Medline Plus is NIH’s Web site for patients and their families and friends. The web site provides general information about antibiotics and offers information in English and Spanish.
The FDA provides a Consumer Update article as a printable PDF file; and a short, patient-friendly, two-minute video about antibiotic resistance.
As pharmacists, we are experts on antibiotics. Counsel patients receiving antibiotics to take all of their medication, and to take it at the frequency prescribed. You can help patients by asking what reminders they use for everyday tasks, and suggesting they incorporate reminders for their antibiotics the same way.
CAPT. Chew: These are great tips for pharmacists to share with our patients. If you have questions about antibiotic resistance, call or email FDA’s Division of Drug Information.