Overuse and misuse of antibiotics is creating antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria against which none of our current antibiotics work. The race is on to develop new antibiotics to kill these resistant strains but, if we don’t win that race, we could face a future in which antibiotics no longer work.
That could mean a return to the pre-antibiotic age, where people with compromised immune systems may not recover from common infections and deaths in childbirth or from infected wounds or pneumonia were commonplace. The inappropriate use of antibiotics will drive antibiotic resistance which means antibiotics will become less likely to work in the future.
The Government has announced an ambition to halve inappropriate prescribing of antibiotics by 2020.