Join Audubon County Memorial Hospital & Clinics as we celebrate American Pharmacy Month. With winter approaching, one of the most common requests of health care providers will be for an antibiotic. During pharmacy month, we want to discuss how antibiotics are used. Antibiotics are not effective against viruses such as the common cold or flu. Even some bacterial infections such as bronchitis or a sinus infection do not need an antibiotic right away.
The reason that sensible use of antibiotics is so important is because of the emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria. This means that antibiotics that we would typically use to treat infection are no longer effective against that type of bacteria. Resistance to antibiotics occurs in a number of ways. Bacteria have the ability to adapt their own DNA to protect themselves from the antibiotic. When an antibiotic is used too many times, or inappropriately, the bacteria in our body are able to change in order to prevent being killed.
This also occurs when we don’t take the prescribed antibiotic for the prescribed amount of time. When bacteria become resistant to the typical treatments health care providers are forced to move to a secondary treatment option. As we continue to do this we continue to build tougher, stronger bacteria that are harder to get rid of!
Unnecessary antibiotics also have the risk of causing side effects just like any other time. Allergic reactions and side effects are still very common during antibiotic use. In order to prevent resistance and avoid unwanted adverse drug effects please remember the following things:
- Antibiotics are not effective against viruses.
- Some bacterial infections don’t need to be treated immediately with an antibiotic
- Always practice good hygiene (hand washing, cover your cough or sneeze, stay home if you are sick, etc.)
- Always take the entire course of antibiotics as prescribed by your provider
- Talk to your provider or pharmacist if you have any questions about antibiotics!
- For more information on appropriate antibiotic use go to the CDC website.
Our pharmacist, Brett Pietig, PharmD, works with staff and providers to provide a wide array of services to Audubon County Memorial Hospital & Clinics. Examples of these services include acute illness management; pain management; antimicrobial stewardship; seasonal and lifespan immunizations; medication reviews to assess safety, effectiveness, interactions and adherence; care management and counseling for disease states such as diabetes, high blood pressure, asthma, and high cholesterol; staff education; and smoking cessation counseling.
Brett has an undergraduate degree in Chemistry from Creighton University as well as a Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) from Creighton University. “I like getting to work closely with so many different departments from the business office to t he outpatient clinics to the med/surg floor to make sure that our patients get high-quality health care.” Stated Brett, “The people are so friendly and always want to do their best to take care of our patients.” In his free time, Brett enjoys playing sports like baseball, golf, basketball, as well as coaching baseball. Brett enjoys spending time with his wife to and two young kids, Lena (3) and Miles (1).
October is American Pharmacists Month, a celebration in support of pharmacists around the country. The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) celebrates the accomplishments of pharmacists throughout the year but commemorates it during October by recognizing pharmacists’ contributions to health care and all they can do for their communities.