Mucinex launches Flip the Script campaign

Mucinex's Flip the Script campaign aims to educate consumers about the widespread inappropriate use of antibiotics.
Sandra Levy
Senior Editor

Mucinexa brand made by Reckittis launching its “Flip the Script” campaign, a multi-pronged initiative that Mucinex said aims to educate consumers about the widespread inappropriate use of antibiotics currently plaguing the U.S. and the world at large. 

As consumers struggle to navigate yet another heavy-hitting cold and flu season, the brand will partner with Urgent and Primary Care Centers to help address this issue. 

Mucinex said that 7 in 103 Urgent Care Center patients ask their doctor for an antibiotic and 45.7% of inappropriate antibiotic prescriptions for respiratory diagnoses were from Urgent Care centers. In response, Mucinex plans to roll out signage and educational materials at Urgent and Primary Care Centers, as well as a series of educational videos and audio PSAs online, which the company said clearly explain why OTC products like Mucinexnot antibioticsare still the best option for treating cold and flu symptoms.   

[Read more: Walgreens releases 2023-2024 flu index]

Antibiotic Resistance caused partly by this misuse of antibiotics is a leading cause of death worldwide, Mucinex noted. "This misuse stems largely from two common and incorrect misconceptions: that antibiotics are the best line of defense against cold and flu symptoms and that antibiotics are essential when cold and flu symptoms last longer than two or three days."   

The Mucinex “Flip the Script” campaign follows a decade-long commitment by Reckitt to shine a brighter light on the serious and increasingly pervasive issue of Antibiotic Resistance. During that time, Reckitt established a global coalition of experts (GRIP - Global Respiratory Infection partnership) from 12 countries committed to curtailing inappropriate antibiotic use in Upper Respiratory tract infections; rolled out healthcare professional and consumer-facing antibiotic programs across 10 countries focused on education to prevent antibiotic misuse; and implemented an educational video campaign in clinic waiting rooms across the United States which drove down antibiotic prescriptions by 3.46%.  

“People don’t realize that antibiotic misuse and antibiotic resistance are a huge societal issue, and they often expect a prescription for antibiotics to help them feel better,” said Mark Pearson, vice president, of marketing for Health Brands at Reckitt. “That’s why Mucinex conceived the ‘Flip the Script’ campaign: To raise awareness and help patients feel more confident when their doctor recommends an over-the-counter medication to fight cold and flu symptoms.” 

"Simply put, the common cold and influenza are both viral infections, so antibiotics provide no relief from symptoms whatsoever. Antibiotics only fight against bacterial infections. Eighty percent of the time, antibiotics are also completely unnecessary when suffering from a respiratory tract infection. Nevertheless, these myths continue to swirl around antibiotics and become particularly pernicious during cold and flu season," Mucinex said. 

Mucinex’s partnership with Urgent and Primary Care Centers throughout the nation will focus on states that have a high index of certain AMR strains and antibiotic prescriptions per population. 

How can consumers Flip the Script? Those who visit participating urgent care centers will find educational materials about antibiotic resistance, urging them to reach out to their physician when feeling unwell so that the proper treatment can be prescribed. Should the physician recommend an over-the-counter medication, they can share a “prescription” with the patient—an informative flipped brochure about antibiotics vs. OTC medication—that includes a Mucinex coupon. 

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