I have heard that when COVID-19 patients are admitted to hospital, they are often given antibiotics empirically. Is this true?
Some patients with severe COVID-19 symptoms can develop sepsis very quickly. To try and prevent such patients going into septic shock, empiric antibiotics are given without knowing whether the patient has or has not got a bacterial respiratory infection. Until rapid bedside diagnostic tests are developed for determining if the patient has a bacterial infection and if so which organism, the clinician has no choice but to give empiric antibiotics (read more here)