Here at Perham Living, we take antibiotic use very seriously, so we are pleased to let you know that we have an antibiotic stewardship policy and program. Antibiotic stewardship is the practice of improving antibiotic use.

Although antibiotics save lives when used to treat bacterial infections, antibiotics won’t work for viruses such as a cold or flu and many urinary tract conditions.

When antibiotics aren’t needed, they won’t help you, and the side effects could hurt you. Common side effects are dizziness, nausea, diarrhea, yeast infections, and allergic reactions.

Along with serious side effects, unnecessary antibiotics lead to antibiotic resistance. Antibiotic resistance is when bacteria develop ways to withstand antibiotics. These resistant bacteria can spread to you and your loved ones. The CDC estimates that two million people get resistant infections yearly in the U.S. and 23,000 die as a result.

“Perham Living is taking action to make sure that our residents get the best care,” states Tracy Hendrickx, Perham Living’s vice-president of long-term care. “Our antibiotic stewardship program goals include making sure residents get antibiotics only when necessary – for bacterial infections, and making sure residents get the right antibiotic, at the right time, for the right length of time.”

What can you do? Ask three questions before you take antibiotics:

  1. Do I really need antibiotics? Antibiotics treat bacterial infections. Ask whether you have a bacterial infection.
  2. What are the risks? Antibiotics can cause side effects like nausea and diarrhea and lead to antibiotic resistance.
  3. Are there other options to help me feel better? Rest and plenty of fluids are important, and ask about over-the-counter medicines that might help relieve your symptoms.

Perham Living is a nationally recognized leader in older adult services offering post-acute care, home care, assisted living, adult day services, apartment living, memory care assisted living, and a nursing home community with its campus.