As the medical community develops treatments to combat the coronavirus, another deadly enemy continues to lurk in hospitals across the country: antibiotic-resistant infections.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calls antibiotic resistance one of the “biggest public health challenges of our time,” and a new study suggests doctors may be partially to blame for its prevalence.
The study, published last week in the peer-reviewed journal JAMA Network Open, found more than half of antibiotics prescribed in hospitals were not consistent with recommendations, alarming health experts who say inappropriately prescribing medications contributes to antibiotic resistance.
“We’re in an antibiotic crisis. Many call this the ‘silent pandemic’ going on concurrently with the coronavirus pandemic,” said Dr. Debra Goff, infectious clinical pharmacist and professor of pharmacy who leads antibiotic resistance efforts at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.
In the agency’s study, researchers looked at 1,566 patients who received antibiotics and found that 55.9% shouldn’t have received them based on practice guidelines.