Left unchecked, antibiotic resistance could have a devastating impact on our next generation.
But how do we make children and young people more aware of the issue? And how can we encourage them to take action to reduce resistance?
That is the theme of the third day of campaigning for World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (18-24 November).
Our charity’s work has very much focused on the student age group, particularly medical, research, pharmaceutical and general science undergraduates. They, of course, will be tomorrow’s doctors, vets, and dentists – and so need a good grounding in antibiotic resistance. We seek to nurture an interest in antibiotics early in their educational careers.
The University of Manchester’s Antimicrobial Resistance Society is the first of its kind in the UK. It has been helping us to raise funds to find new treatments. Treatments will support people suffering with drug-resistant pneumonia, TB, sexually transmitted and urinary tract infections. They have also organised a virtual bake-off challenge as part of our Great British Tea Party.
The Manchester students are also working on a pilot outreach programme. They go into schools to teach children about antibiotics and antibiotic resistance.
The pharmaceutical company Pfizer has a very active schools education plan ‘Superbugs: Join the Fight’ which has materials, competitions and other activities to teach children about the problem of drug-resistant infections.
Members of our charity’s Education Committee have been involved in projects such as E-Bug, a fun and interactive way for school children to learn about micro-organisms and the spread, prevention and treatment of infection.
If you have an interest in antibiotics and want to help prevent a global health crisis, find out more about how you can support our work.