Did you know it’s estimated that up to half of all antibiotic prescriptions in Canada are unnecessary? The overuse of antibiotics is a major contributor to antibiotic resistance and is threatening our ability to treat common infectious diseases. Using antibiotics when you don’t need them can also cause unwanted side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea in as in as many as one in four people.
These are just a few of the reasons why Choosing Wisely Manitoba is a proud supporter of the Using Antibiotics Wisely Campaign, led by Choosing Wisely Canada. This national campaign, in conjunction with Antibiotic Awareness Week from November 12th to 18th, focuses on developing and disseminating resources for clinicians and patients to help reduce unnecessary antibiotic use.
There are many misconceptions surrounding antibiotics and what they treat. For example, antibiotics fight bacterial infections like strep throat, whooping cough, and bladder infections, but they do not fight viruses. Unfortunately, no amount of antibiotics will get rid of your cold and flu.
The goal of the campaign is to raise awareness by providing clinicians and patients with evidence based tools and materials to support conversations about unnecessary antibiotic prescribing.
In addition to these resources, there are over 20 Choosing Wisely Canada specialty-specific recommendations that encourage judicious antibiotic use, created by over 15 national specialty societies. We encourage you to take a look at the Using Antibiotics Wisely resources that can support your daily practice and your care.
You can access all the Using Antibiotics Wisely materials here.