Why Superbugs Thrive In Hospitals

People are a little freaked out about a recent
deadly superbug outbreak in Los Angeles. But what are superbugs? And why are they such
a problem? Hey everyone Julia here for DNews The recent outbreak at a UCLA hospital was
caused by a strain of carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae, or CRE. According to the
national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) CRE can lead to death in up to half
of seriously infected patients. CRE is a kind of superbug, a bacteria that
evolves resistance to most antibiotics. Hospitals tend to be the epicenters of superbug
outbreaks. The combination of high use of antibiotics and lots of sick people pack into
one place, seems to be a breeding ground for them. Some bacteria aren’t transmitted all
that easily, they’re not like a cold which can travel on a sneeze. Caregivers like nurses,
can spread bacteria through touch. But let’s say a nurse, touches a wound or stool sample
of an infected person and they don’t wash their hands enough. Then they touch another
patient, who is already vulnerable because of their own wounds or weakened immune systems. Sometimes super bugs can live on an instrument,
like an endoscope, which is properly cleaned between procedures. It seems this is what
went wrong in UCLA. Caregivers didn’t realize the patients carried CRE and normal sanitization
methods weren’t enough to kill it. From the discovery of penicillin in 1928,
we lived in a golden age of treatment for bacterial infections. These drugs saved millions
of lives. But scientists fear this hayday is coming to a fast end. Bacteria have evolved
faster than we can keep up. It’s become an arms race and we’re losing. We are now
defenseless in the face of certain strains of bacteria. According to the World Health
Organization, one of the most common superbug MRSA, is 64% more deadly than non-resistant
strains of the bacteria. Dr Keiji Fukuda, WHO’s Assistant Director-General
for Health Security says “the world is headed for a post-antibiotic era, in which common
infections and minor injuries which have been treatable for decades can once again kill”. Antibiotic resistant bacteria is a growing
epidemic, according to the CDC, mostly because too many doctors over-prescribe antibiotics
and patients don’t use them properly. We’re also exposed to antibiotics that are overused
in farm production. Unfortunately research into new antibiotics
has been slow. In the past 30 years, there has only been one promising new antibiotic
class. Recently, researchers from Northeastern University identified a potential new antibiotic
found in dirt in a “grassy field in Maine”. In tests, the compound, teixobactin, killed
off a ton of bacteria, even ones that are currently resistant to most antibiotics. But
it’s still a few years away from reaching patients. At least there’s some hope. So what do we do in the meantime? For the strains frequently found in hospitals,
it’s crucial for caregivers to wash their hands often and sterilize equipment properly. Doctors need to prescribe antibiotics only
when necessary. Antibiotics don’t work for viruses, which cause things like the common
cold and flu. As for what you can do, don’t take antibiotics unless prescribed and take
the whole course of them to make sure you’ve killed them all. Maybe reduce your use of
antimicrobial soap, too. In 2014 Minnesota banned the use of antimicrobial soap citing
some health concerns including the rise of resistant bacteria. If you want to learn more about how antimicrobial
soap might be a problem, check out Trace’s video here So are you scared of super bugs? Let us know
in the comments below. And while you’re at it, don’t forget to hit that like and
subscribe button and keep coming back for new episodes every day of the week.

91 thoughts on “Why Superbugs Thrive In Hospitals

  1. I was working on a study on outpatient palliative care recently, and one of the nurses was convinced that "the increased existence and spread of superbugs in hospitals is far from proven…" i could just silently facepalm and really, really didn't feel like arguing about it…

  2. Seems like humanity found the blessed tool of penicillin before they were smart enough to use it responsibly… good luck everyone in the next century…
    People don't realise that humanity is still a very young species and that we are currently still pretty much just a bunch of irrational shortsighted children.

  3. Why use dumb chemicals when you can throw selective, adaptive, replicating medicine at the problem?

  4. Oh well. Maybe people will actually start to appreciate their good health and come to the realisation that life is just a merciless pursuit for survival and not a ride where you spend tons of money and stuff your face.

  5. I hear about the overuse of antibiotics like once a month. Don't understand why it isn't common knowledge and why it doesn't stop.

  6. The antibiotics I've been prescribed aren't designed to fight bacteria. They were designed to ease pain. They also make me feel like ten inches tall.

  7. All the more reason to go vegan. You will be less likely to end up in a hospital and avoid animals filled with antibiotics. Also you are less likely to need drugs.

  8. You know what else would help? Employers and schools not requiring people to go to a doctor for every cold and flu. This just puts them at the center for contracting and spreading these far more dangerous diseases around. Doctor's notes should have legal limits. It's a cold, just stay home, sleep, drink plenty of water. You don't need to go to the doctor and take drugs for every single cold and risk exposing yourself to something much worse. Stupid, fucking asinine policies of schools and businesses are contributing to the spread of these disease. No, it's not the main or only factor, but it's definitely up there.

  9. These super bugs can survive on your hands and on equipment even when they are washed and disinfected properly as usual, this makes it difficult to wipe out, but does not mean that things are dirty. I would say door handles, sinks, chairs, underneath tables, walls, coffee dispensers and such that a lot of people touch are the biggest sinners.

  10. Hospitals are a mecca for the sick, and the healthy to get sick… To all you doctor motherfu(kers that work for big pharma, your time is soon up! The healthy/educated are coming for you.

  11. This is the reason why we need (bacterio) phage therapy in the US and other developed countries. From what I'm aware of, the country of Georgia is the only one w/ this therapy.

  12. It is a little frustrating to see Julia constantly doing every segment. I want to see more Trace and the one dude with the glasses

  13. This is an example of the survival of the fittest, leading a whole species to change, gaining new traits and thus be different from their ancestors. Over time these changes accumulate that could turn the species into another completely different species, also known as evolution. This is happening right in front of our eyes, yet religious people pretend not to see them.

  14. We shouldn't be using all the "kills 99.9%" cleaners for 2 reasons. First, if you kill 99.9% then the .1% of super bugs that are stronger than all the rest have a wide open field to grow and spread. Second, if you are never exposed to anything your immune system won't develop much. Then you'll really be in trouble when you get that .1% super bug you basically cultured. Of course hospitals need cleaners like this but I think they should only be used in the home if you have someone who has a suppressed immune system or other medical issue.

  15. Ever heard of Antimicrobial copper-alloy touch surfaces? Hospital should all use brass for the door knobs and patient bed frame, it can significantly reduce the survival of bacteria or virus. Any stainless steel that can be replace by brass should be replace by brass 

  16. What we really need is a nanobot that catches and kills bacteria in the system, like white blood cells except far more advanced. Imagine a horde of these nanobots destroying these bacteria. How do you develop defenses against a tiny robot? 

  17. Isn't there some way to immunize people from certain bacteria, sort of like how vaccines immunize us to certain viruses?  What if people at a young age were exposed to weakened bacteria (is there such a thing?) until we developed a resistance to it?  Would that work?

  18. A return to copper tools and surfaces. Trace did a video about it, copper, being the wonderful conductor it is, steals electrons from the virus and bacteria that come into contact with it. The effect is terminal for one celled organisms.

  19. that joke about it killing 99% of germs / bacteria and that 1% being super germs isnt as funny as it use to be now. . . .

  20. Anyone else think if humans could make most of their bodies synthetic & hostile to microbial life infectious diseases might not continue to be a problem for them?

  21. You can thank that medicine you've all been taking for this upcoming era.. Well done folks! 
    I'm fine though.. I've stopped and refused outright meds since elementary when we covered evolution, and later on another science discussion about your precious meds… 1+1 is 2.. 
    If we evolve to be stronger through trial and error (which we do and have been since single cell life) and meds do the work for your immune system for you… Well it's like those muscles you want to get bigger but are too lazy to work out.. Try getting sick once and a while!! It'll do you some good, and the species as well.. 

    Also, quick tip: Tell your doc you're allergic to Penicillin.. That'll help you more than your uneducated or unenlightened mind will ever allow you to understand.. Thank me when you're still alive.. ;D

  22. I think our future tool for this problem is the nanobots. Dnews made a video about it already.

  23. my mom is a pharmacist and she knows exactly how overprescribed antibiotics are – A LOT. that's valid for Bulgaria, but i believe it's the same story everywhere.

  24. Of course we aren't losing the evolutionary arms race. We already have the beginnings of a nanotech industry. Eventually we will have nanobots that will augment our immune system and sometime this century there won't be any humans bacterial or viral infections.

  25. having everything super clean as a child. you don't get the natural antibiotiics your body needs to fight infections.

  26. I have never taken antibiotics and I never used antibiotic soap. Using or taking something that literally means "anti-life" never made sense to me. Of course non of that matters because since I'm likely going to die anyway because all of you fuckers who are scared of bugs and are now breeding superbugs…

  27. Hi DNews i love ur show but can u do an episode about brainwaves and binaural beats 
    Tons of info on google 
    I'm really curious how and when to use em

  28. Use alcohol (over 75% concentration) to sanitize your hands in stead of antimicrobial soap. It doesn't cause resistances in bacteria.

  29. One solution that many scientists have already found to antibiotic resistant bacteria are bacteriophages, or viruses that destroy bacteria. As bad as it sounds, you would infect a patient that has a serious bacterial infection with a bacteriophage, or a phage for short, and they would have no more bacterial infection. Does that mean they would have a virus instead? Absolutely not! A bacteriophage can only attack bacteria, meaning it can't hop over to another domain of life and infect a human cell. Once the bacterial infection is gone, there's no virus either. Best part of all is that viruses always win that "arms race" against bacteria, at all times. It's just a fact that viruses mutate much faster than bacteria.

  30. One thing that we could do is invest in synthetic biology and construct bacteria strands that act like white blood cells and help fight certain viral and bacterial infections. 

  31. But we already stopped human evolution through medicine and treatments. We are not evolving anymore or we are doing a lot slower than we are supposed to, and once the virus and bacteria out there outgrow the new treatments this will kick us right in the behind. It's horrible, but we should have let natural selection do its job, and that would mean that I would likely have died, but then again with my strong immune system maybe I wouldn't have.

  32. Seems like if they need to use colloidal silver because I know superbugs can be treated with this amazing substance. I especially know it can treat Cre because I've read the reports. Oh and mrsa can also be treated with sovereign silver which is the best brand to buy. But the FDA can't patent this product so they won't even admit it. It's so sad big pharma has to scare the public, oh and they say there's nothing you can do its all a bunch of hocus pocus. If they didn't add antibiotics to our meat we wouldn't have such a big problem either it's not so much prescription overuse it's because we're constantly eating it. Colloidal silver is antiviral antibacterial anti fungus. It's the most antimicrobial substance known to man. God bless hope this helps.

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