Leeds makes a serious statement with bright red pharmacy bags

In a bold effort to make a serious point about antibiotics, healthcare leaders in Leeds have backed a campaign that will see the city’s pharmacy bags turn red for the month of April.

The striking red bags form part of the ‘Seriously Resistant’ campaign which aims to educate local people on the misuse or overuse of antibiotics in order to ensure they remain effective.

According to figures from Public Health England, at least 5,000 deaths are caused every year in England because antibiotics no longer work for some infections.

Philomena Corrigan, Chief Executive for NHS Leeds Clinical Commissioning Groups said:

“It is really important we take action now so that we can ensure antibiotics continue to work when we really need them. If your GP has prescribed you antibiotics, it’s important that you finish the full course, don’t save them for future use, and never share them with others.”

Becky Dam, who is heading up the Seriously Resistant movement with marketing agency, Magpie, says:

“We want Leeds to lead the way in the fight against superbugs, and be the city that’s making the most impact towards antibiotic resistance.

Switching regular prescription bags for standout red ones highlights the severity of this threat to the future of healthcare. Antibiotic resistance is avoidable if we pledge to take action together.”

The key message on the new prescription bags hopes to serve as a reminder to stick to the full course of antibiotics, in order to keep treatment effective for years to come.

Health professionals in Leeds find people have different reasons for not completing their course of antibiotics – forgetting, not liking tablets, feeling much better – the new campaign hopes to spark a change in behaviour and spread the word of antibiotic resistance from the moment people receive their prescription.

The red bags come just months after the Seriously Pledge Hedge took to the streets of Leeds, where members of the public left red hand prints as a symbol of their pledge to take antibiotics seriously.

The NHS in Leeds and Leeds City Council are encouraging everyone to find out more about antibiotic resistance and to pledge to take antibiotics seriously.




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