Medical director discusses hazards of antibiotic use

Nathan Martinez
Keith Williamson presents at Antibiotic Awareness Week at Clark Student Center.

To learn about problems with the use of antibiotics, about 16 people attended a presentation Nov. 12 at 3 p.m.

Presenter Keith Williamson, medical director, said, “We want the students on campus to care and understand appropriate expectations of antibiotics when to use them and when not to when they go to seek medical care.”

The Student Health Advisory Committee gave free T-shirts and pizza to the attendees.

Alex Nguyen, general business freshman, said, “I find it silly that I haven’t even learned the basics of bacteria and how it affects our bodies until this lecture. I’m kind of astonished that such high percentages of doctors prescribe antibiotics when they’re not sure it’ll work or when they wanna get rid of a patient. As for the services, I’m glad that someone here knows what they’re doing.”

Another one of the students attending, Eduardo Castañeda, nursing freshman, also said the presentation was informative.

“I feel like the presentation was full of facts,” Castañeda. “I took AP Biology, and [the presentation is] a message for everyone that diseases and small illnesses can become immune to antibiotics. Anytime that someone is prescribed antibiotics a potential health risk can occur if not properly diagnosed by a doctor.”

In addition to discussing the use of antibiotics, Williamson also discussed the performance of the Vinson Health Center, noting that the staff members see 90 percent of the students who come there within 24 to 48 hours of their first visit.

Students living on or near campus can to stop by  the Vinson Health Center.

“We’re right across Midwestern Parkway where the wellness center is,” said Williamson.

During the presentation, Williamson, said that antibiotics would work only on bacterial infections, not viruses which are the cause the majority of  colds and flu, sinus infections, sore throats and the majority of bronchitis cases.  To prevent the spread of disease, Williamson offered some advice:

  • Wash your hands
  • Use social distancing
  • Cover your cough