Srinagar: The Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) on Wednesday said many Covid-19 patients are given needless antibiotics, turning hospitals into breeding grounds for deadly bugs.
“Doctors prescribe antibiotics for Covid even though it is caused by a virus against which antibiotics have no effect,” DAK President and influenza expert Dr Nisar ul Hassan said.
“Covid-19 is a viral infection that is not helped by taking antibiotics,” he said.
Dr Hassan said despite antibiotics do not work against the virus, clinicians continue to dole out unnecessary antibiotics for Covid patients.
“Inappropriate use of antibiotics has turned hospitals into breeding grounds for deadly bugs that are resistant to all antibiotics,” he said adding more than 80% of the bacteria are resistant even to last resort antibiotics.
“Not only the improper use has helped the microbes to evolve into resistant bugs, but patients are needlessly put at risk of serious adverse effects of antibiotics,” said Dr Hassan.
He said antibiotics are putting Covid patients at risk of opportunistic infection like Clostridium difficile that can worsen their odds of recovery.
They are also responsible for deadly fungal infections in Covid patients that have taken epidemic proportions in several states of the country.
The DAK President said Covid-19 is a biphasic illness with an initial viral replication phase when antivirals help followed by the second inflammatory phase when steroids and other immunomodulators are needed.
“A minuscule number of Covid-19 patients have co-infection with bacteria. That is when you need an antibiotic,” he said.
Dr Nisar said lack of definitive treatment guidelines is leading to chaotic medicine in Covid-19 patients.
“There is an urgent need of an explicit, comprehensive and continuously updated treatment protocol to prevent unnecessary prescription of medicines and ensure that Covid treatment is uniform, and uniformly enforced,” he added.