Coronavirus pandemic exacerbates antimicrobial resistance woes as ignorant doctors throw antibiotics at hospitalized patients – Dr. Eddy Bettermann MD

A recent study suggests that the approach to treating coronavirus (COVID-19) in hospitals could be exacerbating the global antimicrobial resistance (AMR) problems.  If the AMR goes unchecked, the world faces a future in which minor infections could mean death.

The study published in the Lancet found that 85 percent of coronavirus (COVID-19) patients admitted to National Health Service (NHS) hospitals during the first wave of the pandemic had been prescribed antibiotics. But the majority of the 48,902 patients involved in the study did not need or benefit from antibiotics as secondary bacterial infections are very rare in COVID-19 patients.

Of 8,649 COVID-19 patients in the U.K. who underwent microbiological tests for infections, only 1,107 were diagnosed with bacterial diseases. In contrast, other viruses such as flu often cause patients to develop bacterial infections such as bacterial pneumonia. Around one in four patients with severe flu have bacterial co-infections.

Coronavirus pandemic exacerbates antimicrobial resistance woes as ignorant doctors throw antibiotics at hospitalized patients – Dr. Eddy Bettermann MD