World Antibiotics Awareness Week — [Philip Davies in the Chair]

Part of Backbench Business – in Westminster Hall at 2:51 pm on 16th November 2017.

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Photo of Julian Sturdy Julian Sturdy Conservative, York Outer 2:51 pm, 16th November 2017

I thank all hon. Members for their contributions and the Minister for his response. From speaking to him previously and from what he has said today, I know he understands the task ahead not only for us in the UK but globally. It is important to remember and to pay tribute to the work that has already been done, which was ably led by David Cameron and the O’Neill review—one of the most important reviews that was set out by the then Prime Minister.

We have a job to do in this House. I have attended packed Westminster Hall debates on issues such as cycling and bee health—I am not decrying those important issues; I do not want my inbox full of emails on that tonight—but if we are not getting hon. Members from all sides of the House in for a debate on something as important as antibiotic resistance that affects us all, all our constituents, our country and the globe, that is quite worrying. If all hon. Members take that away from this debate, that will be encouraging.

We are an immensely fortunate generation to have been born and to have grown up in the world of the antibiotic age. I look at this issue for the sake of future generations. I have an interest in that because I have young children, and I think the Minister has children of a similar age. When the next generation hit their 30s and 40s and begin to start families of their own, there is a real possibility that their children will be born into a world without antibiotics—a post-antibiotic age. That is quite terrifying. It is essential that the required steps are taken for that next generation.

If we get that right, no medals will be handed out. No statues will be erected in the streets. If the Minister becomes the Minister with responsibility for antibiotic resistance and succeeds in his pledges, he will not be immortalised in a statue in the centre of London. The world will continue as it is, and many will not even know the threat that faced them. If we stand by and do nothing, however, history will be extremely unkind to our generation. It is essential that we act. The UK is making great steps forward, but there is so much more to do and it has to be done on a global stage.

Question put and agreed to.


That this House
has considered World Antibiotics Awareness Week.

Sitting suspended.