Superbug concerns growing amid COVID-19 pandemic

Posted at 7:31 AM, Sep 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-04 08:47:15-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — As the nation continues to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, doctors now say there's a new concern for hospital patients that could be deadly.

Health experts are worried about the growth of what they call superbugs -- bacteria that has become resistant to medications that are used to treat infections.

Doctors say superbugs grow when a patient over-uses or mis-uses an antibiotic. Usually, the biggest concern surrounding the bacteria is that it can affect treatment for anyone with a skin infection or cause urinary tract infections in healthy women.

But since superbugs are found in hospitals and cause pneumonia, there's a new concern it could put COVID-19 patients at a higher risk of dying if they were to face another infection.

At this point, there's no proper antibiotic treatment for super bugs, causing some doctors to have to deny organ transplants or chemotherapy to patients.

"And that is nothing that any of us in the infectious disease business ever, ever want to face. And we know that if don't continue to advocate and act and really change this problem, that could get worse," said Dr. Helen Boucher, Chief of Infectious Diseases Division at Tufts Medical Center in Boston.

While health experts are still working to solve this problem, they say the best way to avoid this is to only take the appropriate amount of antibiotics. Make sure to talk to your doctor about how much you need to take.