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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the White House are working together to foster more responsible use of antibiotics in all healthcare settings by promoting Get Smart About Antibiotics Week, November 14–20.  The CDC estimates 2 million Americans become infected with an antibiotic-resistant germ every year, meaning illness that could previously have been treated with a standard antibiotic may land your patients in the hospital (or worse; 23,000 patients die every year from resistant infections). Cut down on inappropriate antibiotic prescriptions, and you reduce the risk. Use Get Smart About Antibiotics Week to promote not only safe antibiotic use, but your expertise as a public health guardian by writing a guest editorial for your local paper or putting out a press release full of tips to help patients avoid getting sick during flu season (eg, simple things like proper hand washing). The CDC has a wealth of material to support your efforts on its website. Use it, and to let area residents know your location, hours of operation, website, phone number, and the range of services you offer.

Antibiotics Week: A Chance to Attract—and Protect—New Patients