20/10/2017

Antibiotic Use In NI Is 10% Higher Than England

The use of antibiotics in Northern Ireland is 30% higher than England, according to NI's Chief Medical Officer.

Dr Michael McBride issued a stark warning in his 10th Annual Report and said urgent action is needed to prevent millions of people worldwide dying unnecessarily from infections each year due to the growing resistance to antibiotics.

Dr McBride said: "We know that Northern Ireland’s antibiotic usage is higher on average than the rest of the UK and 30 per cent higher than England, with 1.9 million individual antibiotic prescriptions issued annually. Northern Ireland's contribution to this global crisis is clearly significant and we must drive this down.
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"The good news is that we can all do something to help prevent the growth of antibiotic resistance. We are not powerless to stop this from happening – with a few simple steps, we can tackle this problem head on to give future generations the benefits that antibiotics have provided to us. GPs and dentists, and indeed patients too, have a role to play in reducing amount of antibiotics prescribed.

"If we don't act now, it could mean that even the simplest infections cannot be treated and the most straightforward operations cannot be performed. This is an issue that affects every single one of us and could have devastating consequences. It is vital that we tackle this problem urgently so we can safeguard the health of ourselves, our children and future generations."

(CD)

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