The National Academies: What You Need To Know About Infectious Disease

The National Academies

What You Need To Know About Infectious Disease

Emerging Infections: Microbial Threats to Health in the United States (1992)

This volume presents a historical perspective on infectious disease and discusses how "new" diseases, such as HIV/AIDS, arise and how "old" diseases, such as tuberculosis, resurge. The book highlights risk factors for the emergence of microbial threats to health, warns against complacency in public health, and promotes early prevention as a cost-effective and crucial strategy for maintaining public health in the United States and worldwide.

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What do you know about infectious disease?

True or False: If you have a cold or the flu, taking antibiotics will help treat the infection.

  • Sorry, that’s incorrect.

    Antibiotics only work on bacterial infections, not viral infections such as influenza and the common cold. In fact, inappropriate use and overuse of antibiotics contributes to the emergence of drug-resistant bacteria. 

  • Correct!

    Antibiotics only work on bacterial infections, not viral infections such as influenza and the common cold. In fact, inappropriate use and overuse of antibiotics contributes to the emergence of drug-resistant bacteria.