The bed occupancy in intensive care of Buenos Aires public hospitals also accounts for the dramatic growth of coronavirus cases in Buenos Aires territory. In the last seven days, 79 beds were occupied with severe cases. On Tuesday the 13th, 227 were occupied; on Wednesday, 241. Between Thursday and Friday the jump was from 255 to 275. And this Monday the health part of the City indicated that they were already 306 occupied beds. A sustained ascent that puts in alert to the entire public health system in the midst of second wave.
Due to this situation, the Fernandez Hospital will allocate -exclusively- all intensive care unit beds to treat Covid patients. Critical and moderate cases, the latter are those that require non-invasive ventilation. Medical authorities confirmed that at this time they have only two beds available in this hospital.
Sources from the Ministry of Health explained to Clarion that the Fernández is part of a Red ring (together with Argerich, Muñiz and Santojanni), “therefore, it is one of the hospitals to which more patients are referred. The increase in bed occupancy is evident “, that is why the decision was made to allocate 100% to the treatment of the coronavirus. They assured that, for the moment, it is not defined what other establishments could follow the same fate.
By becoming an exclusive Covid care center, another 13 beds will be added, in addition to the 73 (27 non-Covid) with which it had already been attending. And in the next few days another 16 are incorporated. At the door of the hospital, the director spoke to the media, gave details of these numbers and confirmed that they had only two free beds. He also detailed the particularities of the current population in therapy: “In the previous wave, 60% of the internees were older than 60 years. Now that percentage is occupied by patients between 40 and 60 years old “said Ignacio Previgliano.
The intensive therapy of the Fernández hospital will be dedicated to treating Covid cases and the same could happen with other public hospitals in Buenos Aires.
According to sources from the Ministry of Health, the average occupancy of beds in intensive care, which treat critically ill patients, is 22 days. Previgliano indicated that all emergentology that the hospital attends will be referred to the rest of the establishments that make up the public care network. The City has 14 acute care hospitals, another 16 are specialized (for example, dentistry or mental health) and 2 are for children (Elizalde and Gutiérrez).
At this time, the City has 450 intensive therapy beds, intended for severe cases of Covid. As mentioned, 306 are busy and attending this emergency; the rest deal with other ailments, but in the context of this second wave of infections, as places are released, they are destined for Covid. On the other hand, the beds that are added to the care at the Fernández Hospital do not affect the number of total beds, but are beds that they drift from one hospital to another.
In these hours, the president of the Argentine Society of Intensive Care expressed her concern about the health situation. Rosa Reina warned that there may be a collapse of the system: “For more than a week we have been saying that this time we do believe that there may be collapse, because we saw an increase in intensive therapies in a week. In many intensive therapies we go from 30% occupancy to 70% or 80%, “he said on Radio con Vos.
Another worrying fact in the last hours was confirmed by the Buenos Aires health minister himself, Fernán Quirós, during the usual press conference on Tuesdays. He said that the City loaned the supply of respirators it owns to private effectors. There are 50 respirators “which were provided so that they can increase response capacity,” Quirós explained. Then the City asked the Nation to replace those respirators. The minister toned down the uncertainty generated by this loan. He clarified that he asked the Nation to replace these teams in a “technical meeting.”
Also in the last week there was a significant increase in occupancy in these beds that imply the use of non-invasive ventilation. The City has 1,500 beds: on Tuesday the 13th, 35.5% (533 beds) were occupied, while on Monday, there were 705 occupied beds (47%).
.To organize the care, referral and transfer of patients with COVID, the Ministry of Health identifies 18 public hospitals with the colors red, yellow and green. “It is a dynamic system that is reorganized based on constant monitoring of bed occupancy, case curve and virus progression “they explained.
How does the system work? The green ring hospitals (Cecilia Grierson, Penna, Piñero, Rivadavia, Sardá, Udaondo, Vélez Sarsfield and Zubizarreta) refer critical patients to those of greater complexity, that is, to effectors of the yellow and red ring. In the same way, the yellows do it to the red ring. The reds are: Argerich, Fernández, Muñiz and Santojanni; and the yellow ones are Alvarez, Durand, María Ferrer, Pirovano, Ramos Mejía and Tornú.
The derivation is also made by spillage depending on the occupation of beds; from red to yellow and from yellow to green.
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