Change the Course: Create a New Future for Antibiotics

You've heard about the rise of the superbugs. You've heard about the threat of 10 million deaths per year by 2050. It is time to tell a new story and create a new future for antibiotics. You have the power to help Change the Course.


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Antimicrobial agents, including antibiotics, are used in healthcare across the world - from treating minor infections, enabling safe operations through to use in chemotherapy and life-threatening infections such as sepsis. Simply put, we need them to work.

But they are losing their effectiveness and leading to the rise in drug-resistant infections - the so-called superbugs.

As part of Pfizer UK's ongoing dedication to tackling antimicrobial resistance (AMR), we've launched a national campaign which aims to help us all feel empowered to change the course of AMR and create a new future for antibiotics. We need to take action to change the course and create a new future for antibiotics.


 Download the full report

Change the Course: Create a New Future for Antibiotics
Published November 2020.

Why should I care?

Drug resistant infections are one of the biggest public health challenges today. They are rooted in the over-reliance on and misuse of antibiotics and antimicrobial agents.

Currently, AMR kills 700,000 people per year globally. Without antibiotics, there will be a significant increase in deaths.

Antibiotic resistance is not a problem that can be permanently fixed – we can't stop bacteria evolving and becoming resistant to antibiotics. But we can change our relationship with antibiotics and recognise antibiotic resistance as a health issue we have to live with and work hard, continuously to keep at bay.

Why now?

In 2020 we have come to understand how quickly a pandemic can change our lives.

The deadly consequences of the pandemic are a reflection of what happens when there is a disease which can affect anybody and for which we have no effective medical solution or cohesive system to address on a global scale.

We have experienced how our wellbeing can be dependent on the health and behaviour of those around us. With public awareness and knowledge about pandemics at an all-time high, now is the time to work together and take action on antibiotic resistance.


Lisa's story

Lisa's story

Lisa experienced a number of antibiotic resistant infections - including lung infections like pneumonia and surgical site infections. Recurring infections where she ends up in hospital or unwell have a huge impact on Lisa's mental health too, and also her wider family who worry about passing other infections onto her.

Full story


Amer's story

Amer's Story

Amer contracted a serious kidney infection while studying for his masters. During his final exam, Amer felt severe pain in his kidney and went straight to hospital. Originally Amer was sent home, but after collapsing he was rushed back to hospital and diagnosed with septic shock. The doctors said there was an 80% chance that Amer wouldn't have survived, but fortunately he was given the right antibiotic at the right time.


Sheila's story

Sheila's Story

Sheila's story of how constant  urinary tract infections have caused her depression, anxiety and dread; and how nothing has changed over the last 50 years as she suffered and searched for a cure.

Full story



Simon went into hospital for a routine knee operation at the age of 45. The operation was a success, however, soon afterwards he developed a life-threatening antibiotic resistant infection, know as MRSA,  and was in a coma for three and a half weeks. His family, including his three young children, were told to prepare for the worst.


In 2016, Mary was admitted to hospital to address an issue discovered with her heart. But after the open heart surgery, her doctors found her to be septic. Her organs had started to fail and her hospital note stated a 2% chance of survival.


What can I do to take action?

It starts with action to take antibiotics responsibly and help prevent infections.


Spread the word

Start talking about the threat of antibiotic resistance and what we can do about it


Consider how you and others are affected


Share this report to start a conversation

 Join others

Join others already talking about the issue



Call for action

Help advocate for change on a larger scale

Speaking icon

Make your voice heard by speaking out about the issue

 Food icon

Find out how antibiotics are used in food production



Join the learning revolution

Change the way we create a future with antibiotics


Learn about the real-world issue of antibiotic resistance

 Get involved

Get involved in citizen science

Meet the Change the Course taskforce

We’re honoured to have been working with some of the country’s leading experts – from microbiologists to behavioural psychologists – to take a fresh look at the topic and share clear steps we can all take to make a difference.


Prof Christine Bond
University of Aberdeen and Trustee and Education Committee Chair,
Antibiotic Research UK

Sara Kenney
Engagement Streategist and Creative Director
Wowbagger Productions


Carla Brown, PhD
CEO and Founder
Game Doctor Ltd

Dr Ulla McKnight
Research Fellow
University of Sussex


Professor Colin Garner
Chief Executive
Antibiotics Research UK

Dr Adam Roberts
Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine

Phil Graves
Behavioural psychologist and Managing Director
Shift Consultancy

This campaign and report have been funded by Pfizer UK. The taskforce members have been contracted as part of the campaign to provide their independent and expert advice.