Due to the spread of the coronavirus in Hungary and that the epidemic is at the stage of transmissions in communities and will soon progress to the stage of mass infections, hospitals are preparing for an increased number of patients with the disease. Hospitals are continuously expanding the capacities of their intensive care units, as well as their bed capacities. The building of a container hospital is currently underway in Kiskunhalas and temporary hospitals are also being installed in several places, while some hospitals have set up military tents in the courtyard of their institutions to pre-screen patients.
Due to the coronavirus epidemic, several hospitals have been reorganized to operate as quarantine hospitals, and church hospitals are also planning to be involved in coronavirus protection, just like all state hospitals. The first coronavirus patients are treated at the Central Hospital of South Pest, but the capacities there are limited, so other health facilities had to be involved as well.
This is why the Kútvölgyi Hospital and the National Institute for Pulmonology have been prepared to receive coronavirus patients. On March 13, the semi-finished Kútvölgyi block, under reconstruction for years, was opened and made suitable at a rapid pace for receiving patients as soon as possible.
In addition to the Szent László Hospital of the South-Pest Centrum Hospital in Budapest, the National Chief Medical Officer designated four epidemic hospitals in the country: the Semmelweis Member Hospital in Miskolc, the county hospital in Szekszárd, and the city hospitals in Ajka and Kiskunhalas. On Monday, probably the largest epidemic hospital in the country opened in Miskolc. The 840-bed Semmelweis Hospital (part of the central and university hospitals) was emptied in record time and now it only performs preventive and patient care functions related to the coronavirus infection.
On Wednesday, Tibor Lakatos, the head of the operational board in charge of handling novel coronavirus, said that the construction of the container hospital in Kiskunhalas, central Hungary, is progressing well.
The ventilators have already been installed. The mobile container hospital was being built in Kiskunhalas because it is “relatively close” to the capital, where so far most of the infections have been identified. Lakatos said that it was also the area where the right infrastructure conditions for such a facility were in place.
Today, Lakatos announced that the container hospital will be completed next week, but will only be used when normal hospital capacity is no longer sufficient. The new institution will also be able to provide intensive care to patients.
To help pre-screening, military tents have also been set up by the Hungarian Defense Forces in several hospitals. The army built a tent hospital in a single day in the courtyard of Budapest’s St. László Hospital.
The tent system can flexibly adapt to the task at hand. In this stage of the epidemic, it will be used to pre-screen patients so that patients can be assigned to the best possible care within the shortest amount of time.
A military tent was also built at the Heim Pál Hospital on Thursday to pre-screen children arriving at the hospital. On March 21, the hospital was appointed as the institution responsible for the care of children with suspected infections and confirmed coronavirus disease in the Central Hungarian region.
As part of this, an independent Covid-positive department has been set up over the past few days, with an intensive care department and a military tent also set up in the courtyard of the institution to pre-screen patents. There is currently no child with confirmed coronavirus infection in the facility, but suspicious cases are being investigated.
Earlier this week, a temporary hospital for the treatment of 330 people had been set up on the premises of the G pavilion of the Hungexpo exhibition center, in Budapest. Hungexpo offered the place to the operationl board, who began to survey and prepare the area and developed a temporary hospital there. The available capacity of the facility could be increased further, but places like this will only be used if normal hospital capacities are no longer sufficient.
featured photo: Korányi National Pulmonology Institute (MTI/Balogh Zoltán)
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