Expert says doctors must stop giving antibiotics for colds, coughs

May 22, 2013 at 4:01 PM
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GENEVA, Switzerland, May 22 (UPI) -- Britain's chief medical officer says physicians must stop prescribing antibiotics for routine coughs and colds.

Sally Davies said in remarks prepared for delivery told the World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland, this week that without urgent action British healthcare will return to 19th-century levels, with common operations proving potentially lethal as germs become resistant to antibiotics.

Britain will be publishing a five-year, cross-government strategy this summer to address the issue, The Daily Telegraph reported.

However, Davies said one country cannot tackle this issue alone and a partnership to push a global political agenda to avert this "catastrophic threat" of superbugs, such as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus.

The five-year plan to address antibiotic resistance is expected to include promoting "responsible prescribing," improving infection prevention and developing alternative drugs.

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