Strengthen the Antibiotic Action Plan!

We take antibiotics for granted. Strep throat, sinus infection, UTI – a quick visit to the doctor, a prescription, and you’re feeling better. But that era is coming to an end because overuse of antibiotics leads to deadly, resistant infections that current antibiotics can't cure.

The White House has issued an action plan -- a plan with many good elements, but a plan that needs to be even stronger. The White House plan needs to take stronger, immediate steps.

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Save our antibiotics!

Dear Secretaries Vilsack, Burwell and Carter:

I call on the White House and Secretaries Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Ashton B. Carter and Thomas Vilsack -- in your roles as co-chairs of the Task Force for Combating Antibiotic ­Resistant Bacteria -- to take these bold steps in confronting the problem of antibiotic resistance.

* Require hospitals and health-care providers to report antibiotic use and antibiotic-resistant infections.
* Require mandatory real-time reporting of outbreaks related to antibiotic-resistant infections.
* Improve rapid diagnostic testing to distinguish between viral and bacterial pathogens, so antibiotics get prescribed more judiciously.
* Ensure rigorous pre-market safety testing for new antibiotics.
* Ban the use of antibiotics on healthy animals.

Once you have finalized the action plan, we all stand ready to help you implement every aspect of it to preserve the efficacy of the antibiotics we need to keep our families safe.

[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State ZIP]