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Partnerships, conversation aim to curb overuse of antibiotics

Antibiotic capsules
Antibiotic capsules - thinkstock.com

The Telegram has partnered with Quality Care NL and Choosing Wisely NL to outline the dangers of antibiotics overuse.
Through data provided by both organizations, and practical information from Dr. Natalie Bridger, the risk of harmful side effects of antibiotic over-prescribing has been well documented.
Overuse encourages the growth of resistant bacteria that become more and more difficult to treat.
It’s how outbreaks of MRSA and resistant strains of c.difficile and even gonorrhea occur.

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Choosing Wisely NL is asking patients and health-care providers to help start the conversation about reducing antibiotics use. In the coming weeks, you will see a public outreach campaign on television, social media sites and in print as the partners try to educate patients about correct usage of these drugs.
Newfoundland and Labrador is particularly at risk because this province uses more antibiotics than anywhere else in the country.
According to the 2016 Canadian Antimicrobial Surveillance System Report, Newfoundlanders and Labradorians receive 33 per cent more prescribed daily doses of antibiotics than the next-highest users (Saskatchewan).
The aim is to reduce antibiotics usage in this province. But ads and posters can’t send the message widely enough, and help is required to spread the word about antibiotics.
A number of tools have been developed to help explain the dangers of antibiotics overuse, and what can be done instead, including:
- Several quick one-page explainers, for parents and for seniors;
- Helpful posters you can share or print;
- Extended explainer about antibiotics use in our province;
- Handy YouTube video for your Facebook, Twitter or other social media feeds.
Antibiotics overuse can be curbed in Newfoundland and Labrador by encouraging people to “Be Healthcareful and Choose Wisely.”


With files from Quality Care NL

telegram@thetelegram.com

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