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Antibiotic use in the United States, 2017
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    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) focuses on helping healthcare providers deliver the best possible care for patients every day. Research shows that one way we can improve patient care is through better use of antibiotics. Modern medicine depends on antibiotics to protect people against infection. These powerful drugs have transformed health care, but as with any medicine, antibiotics carry risks. When antibiotics are needed, the benefits usually outweigh the risks. However, when a patient takes an antibiotic when it is not needed, the patient gets no benefit and is unnecessarily exposed to preventable, and potentially serious, health problems. Each time an antibiotic is used, it can increase the risk that a future infection will be resistant to antibiotics. Antibiotic resistance occurs when bacteria do not respond to the drugs designed to kill them. It is one of the most serious public health problems in the United States and threatens to return us to the time when simple infections were often fatal. Improving the way we prescribe and use antibiotics, a concept referred to as “antibiotic stewardship,” is critical for all healthcare settings. When we optimize the treatment of infections, we protect patients from harm and combat antibiotic resistance. Suggested citation: CDC. Antibiotic Use in the United States, 2017: Progress and Opportunities. Atlanta, GA: US Department of Health and Human Services, CDC; 2017. CS279493-A stewardship-report.pdf
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