Fayette County Memorial Hospital (FCMH) staff members are working hard
to protect patients – this time by NOT prescribing medications.
Antibiotic Awareness week is a national effort by the Center for Disease
Control (CDC) to raise awareness of the importance of appropriate antibiotic
use to combat antibiotic resistance.
Antibiotic Stewardship Programs have been shown to improved patient safety
and clinical quality. Doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and other healthcare
providers at FCMH have teamed up to implement these programs in our Emergency
Department, Same Day Care Clinic, Physician Offices, and Hospital. Patients
will see increased signage throughout the hospital about being Antibiotic
Aware and information about antibiotic use is included in patient discharge
and informational packets. Our doctors, nurses, and health professionals
are participating in advanced training through the CDC's Antibiotic
Stewardship Training Plan to better learn when antibiotics are the right
tool for the job. Imagine someone using a steel cutter to sharpen a pencil,
or a hammer to mash potatoes. Sounds laughable. But each year an estimated
20-50% of all antibiotics prescribed in U.S. acute care hospitals are
either unnecessary or inappropriate. Just like using the wrong tool for
the job, the consequences can be serious.
Any medication can lead to side effects. For antibiotics these side effects
may include the development of rashes, nausea, dizziness, yeast infection,
and diarrhea. Antibiotics can interact with other prescription medications.
When antibiotics aren’t needed, they will not help you, and in fact,
can harm you. One of the most serious consequences can be the development of
Clostridium difficile infection. This is an overgrowth of harmful bacteria in the colon, often
leading to hospitalization and possibly death.
Since the discovery of penicillin in 1928, antibiotics have allowed doctors
to treat infections that were once considered deadly. Today a worldwide
crisis is developing as the misuse of antibiotics has resulted in resistant
“superbugs.” One of the most widely recognized is methicillin-resistant
staph aureus (MRSA). Each year in the U.S., at least 2 million people
get an antibiotic-resistant infection, and at least 23,000 people die.
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO)
have identified strategies for reducing the inappropriate use of antibiotics
and slow the development of antibiotic resistance. More information on
how you can protect yourself and your family can be found at: