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World Antibiotic Awareness Week – 12 to 18 Nov 2018

Change Can’t Wait. Our Time with Antibiotics is Running Out

Each November, World Antibiotic Awareness Week (WAAW) aims to increase global awareness of antibiotic resistance and to encourage best practices among the general public, health workers and policy makers to avoid the further emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance.

Since their discovery, antibiotics have served as the cornerstone of modern medicine. However, the persistent overuse and misuse of antibiotics in human and animal health have encouraged the emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance, which occurs when microbes, such as bacteria, become resistant to the drugs used to treat them.

2018 theme and messaging

Previous World Antibiotic Awareness Weeks have generally had a single overarching theme, this year we are giving you the choice!

The 2018 WAAW campaign seeks to provide greater flexibility to regions and countries to reflect their unique priorities, target specific levels of awareness and their specific audiences. Our approach is to anchor WAAW 2018 in the Global Action Plan on AMR with five “focus” days of tailored social media messaging around each of the Objectives.

The World Health Organization has developed a range of materials for WAAW in all UN languages. Posters, banners and infographics will be available, as well as media resources, which can be accompanied by tailored social media messages for each day of WAAW 2018.

This multi-day messaging campaign will give us the chance to try something new and we encourage regions and countries, Ministries of Health to participate in WAAW 2018 by marking all or just some of these “focus” days by speaking up on social media.








Overall message

Throughout all WAAW 2018 media, we encourage all participants to incorporate two key messages to help guide discussion on antibiotic use and take steps towards wider public understanding of antibiotic resistance. These messages are reflected in the official WAAW 2018 posters.

Think twice. Seek Advice.
Misuse of Antibiotics puts us all at Risk.


  1. Download materials: Print posters, download social media squares, infographics and other WAAW materials to share on social media on the WHO WAAW webpage. They are available in all 6 UN languages. Email with any questions.
  2. Participate in WAAW multiday messaging social media campaign: Use the daily ‘focus’ messages and resources provided below to post on social media platforms using WAAW 2018 hashtags. Each day’s message will correspond to one of the 5 GAP objectives.
  3. Participate in general WAAW social media campaign: Promote WAAW throughout the week using the general WAAW resources provided below.
    Interactive Platform and Game – Share your WAAW event on the interactive platform.
  4. Make sure you play the fun and informative interactive game on Antimicrobial Resistance, AMR resistance!

12 NOV 2018 Day 1 – Awareness and Behavior Change

GAP Objective 1:

Improve awareness and understanding of antibiotic resistance through effective communication, education and training.

Daily focus message:

Help people understand why antibiotic resistance is happening, that it poses a genuine risk to our future health, and that we all can do something to help.

13 NOV 2018 Day 2 – Surveillance and Research

GAP objective 2:

Strengthen knowledge and evidence base through surveillance and research.

Daily focus message:

Mobilize laboratories in every country to look for evidence of bacterial resistance to help build a global picture of how it is spreading and where it poses the greatest risk.

14 NOV 2018 Day 3 – Infection Prevention and Control, WASH and the Environment

GAP objective 3:

Reduce the incidence of infection through effective sanitation, hygiene and infection prevention measures.

Daily focus message:

Campaign for all hospitals and health-care centers to do their utmost to keep infections at bay with the best possible sanitation and hygiene measures available.

15 NOV 2018 Day 4 – Optimise antibiotic use

GAP objective 4:

Optimise the use of antimicrobial agents in human and animal health.

Daily Focus Message:

Use the antibiotics that are still effective as wisely as possible. Ensure antibiotics are only given to patients who really need them, regulate how they are distributed, and handle them with care.

16 NOV 2018 Day 5 – Investment and R&D

GAP objective 5:

Develop the economic case for sustainable investment that takes account of the needs of all countries, and increase investment in new medicines, diagnostic tools, vaccines and other interventions.

Daily focus message:

Urge governments, funding agencies, and the private sector to invest in new tools, skills and technologies so that our medicines are secured for generations to come.



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