The Australian Medical Association Limited and state AMA entities comply with the Privacy Act 1988. Please refer to the AMA Privacy Policy to understand our commitment to you and information on how we store and protect your data.




AMA encourages responsible prescribing of antibiotics

18 Nov 2013

Antibiotics Awareness Week 18-24 November 2013

AMA President, Dr Steve Hambleton, said today that the AMA is pleased to join with the NPS MedicineWise and other organisations to spread the message that over-prescribing of antibiotics is a threat to the wellbeing of Australians.

NPS MedicineWise is conducting Antibiotic Awareness Week this week, 18-24 November.

Dr Hambleton said that, when antibiotics are taken unnecessarily or incorrectly, it encourages the development of dangerous antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

The AMA encourages medical practitioners to be informed about when antibiotics are clinically appropriate. They should only be prescribed:

  • when the benefit to the patient is likely to be substantial;
  • as recommended by clinical guidelines and pathology providers; and
  • at the appropriate dose and duration.

It is also important that patients understand that:

  • antibiotics are only effective against bacteria and not viruses. That means they are not effective against colds and the flu; and
  • if antibiotics are prescribed for an infection, the whole course should be taken as directed.

The AMA commends the extensive educational material developed by the NPS for medical practitioners and patients.

The AMA has also been in consultation with the Australian Veterinary Association over community concerns about the use of antibiotics in animals, particularly food animals.

More information is available on the NPS MedicineWise website and the AMA website


18 November 2013


CONTACT:        John Flannery                     02 6270 5477 / 0419 494 761

                         Kirsty Waterford                02 6270 5464 / 0427 209 753

Follow the AMA Media on Twitter:
Follow the AMA President on Twitter:
Follow Australian Medicine on Twitter:
Like the AMA on Facebook

Published: 18 Nov 2013