It is rising to dangerously high levels in all parts of the world and compromising the ability to treat infectious diseases and putting people everywhere at risk.
The World Health Organization is leading a global campaign, Antibiotics: Handle with Care.
It is using World Antibiotic Awareness Week, between 16 and 22 November, to increase awareness of global antibiotic resistance and to encourage best practices among the general public, health workers and policy-makers to avoid the further emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance.
Global action plan
A global action plan to tackle the growing problem of resistance to antibiotics and other antimicrobial medicines was endorsed at the Sixty-eighth World Health Assembly in May 2015.
One of the key objectives of the plan is to improve awareness and understanding of antimicrobial resistance through effective communication, education and training.
The theme of the campaign, Antibiotics: Handle with Care, reflects the overarching message that antibiotics are a precious resource and should not be taken for granted.
They should be used to treat bacterial infections only when prescribed by a certified health professional.
Antibiotics should never be shared and the full course of treatment should be completed – not saved for the future.
Of course, antibiotics are and will remain a lifesaving and valuable treatment for bacterial meningitis here in the UK.
The campaign seeks to ensure they are only used when necessary and as prescribed, and should be treated as a precious resource that cannot be taken for granted.
For more information on the campaign, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org