If you are like most people, you or someone in your family has been prescribed antibiotics to treat an illness. Maybe it was a simple ear infection, or strep throat. Or maybe it was something potentially life-threatening, like pneumonia or a post-surgery infection.
When we get an infectious illness, we assume the antibiotics our doctors prescribe will make us better. But what if they didn’t? Medical experts, including from the World Health Organization, are warning that if we don’t stop the overuse of antibiotics, they could stop working. Antibiotic-resistant infections already make two million people sick and claim the lives of at least 23,000 Americans each year. Some experts are predicting that by 2050, these infections could kill more people worldwide than cancer kills today. We need to take immediate and decisive action to stop the overuse of antibiotics.