A study published by the European Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC) has revealed that up to half the cases of infections caused by a single superbug are now resistant to even the most powerful antibiotics.

At the same time, a poll by the UK Health Protection Agency has shown that a quarter of people mistakenly believe that antibiotics work on most coughs and colds. The poll also revealed that 10% of British patients hoard leftover antibiotics using them to self-medicate for future illnesses.

Marina Yannakoudakis, MEP for London, is the Conservative spokesman for health in the European Parliament and the public health committee’s contact point with the ECDC.

Marina said: “Colds are viruses and cannot be cured by antibiotics. I know how annoying coughs and sneezes can be, but there is no quick fix solution; the best way to treat a cold is with plenty of fluids and rest.”

Marina went on to say; “Taking antibiotics when it’s not necessary can do more harm than good. Antibiotics can be effective in fighting bacteria, but the more often we use antibiotics, the more likely bacteria are to become resistant to the treatment. You’re doctor will prescribe antibiotics when you need them. You are putting your health at risk by asking for them when they are not needed. Using antibiotics when they are not required means they are less likely to work when you do need them.”

Tagged with: