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49 patients recovering from Covid-19 transferred to private hospitals to make room for more severe cases

These 49 patients are to stay at Mount Elizabeth Hospital and Concord International Hospital until they show negative results for two successive tests administered

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Singapore—The Ministry of Health (MOH) said that 49 Covid-19 patients who are “generally well” have been moved to private hospitals in order to give way to patients who may have more severe conditions who need the beds in public hospitals.

Twenty-nine patients in recovery were moved to Mount Elizabeth Hospital and 20 were transferred to Concord International Hospital by the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID). According to the MOH, the patients were moved in ambulances set apart for this specific purpose.

These 49 patients are to stay at Mount Elizabeth Hospital and Concord International Hospital until they show negative results for two successive tests administered, MOH added.

These patients need less medical care or are actually not sick anymore, but may still be shedding the virus. After they have two negative tests, they may be discharged from the hospitals.

More than 300 confirmed Covid-19 patients are currently hospitalised in Singapore. Anticipating even higher numbers in the days to come, the MOH has put into place plans to manage the increased need for hospital beds and medical services for Covid-19 patients.

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This includes private and public hospitals working together so that the latter facilities may be maximized for patients with severe cases of the coronavirus.

According to TODAY, the Covid-19 patients transferred to Mount Elizabeth Hospital will stay at Ward 5E, an area that is “self-contained in terms of its air conditioning,” said Stephens Lo, the hospital’s CEO.

He added, “We have prepared for this and our protocols are in place to ensure the patient and all our healthcare workers’ safety” and that the would only need  “minimal monitoring” and be put under 24-security.

Gleneagles, Mount Elizabeth Novena and Parkway East Hospitals are also on standby to admit additional patients in recovery from the coronavirus, said Dr Noel Yeo, senior vice president of hospital operations at Parkway Pantai. The three hospitals are under Parkway Pantai.

And straitstimes.com reports that while some obstetricians at Parkway East had questioned the decision to place the rooms for recovering Covid-19 patients to be placed on the same floor as the maternity ward, it quotes Dr Yeo as saying, “The same stringent safety protocols and precautionary measures will apply for these new patients, who will be housed in a single ward at the hospital.”

He added, “We have been working closely with the Ministry of Health on joining the national effort against Covid-19, and how private sector resources may be utilised to alleviate the load on public healthcare institutions.”

The hospitals have been evaluated and deemed fit for the management of coronavirus patients.

Dr Yeo added that a number of the facilities under Parkway Pantai had already been managing patients diagnosed with Covid-19. A number of security and preventive measures have been put in place to ensure the safety of all patients and staff at the hospitals.

The MOH said that it has plans to coordinate with other private hospitals to also accommodate Covid-19 patients in recovery, and even patients with other illnesses, so that public hospitals may not be hindered in their efforts. —/TISG

Read related: Short-term visitors to pay for own COVID-19 treatment as MOH “prioritises resources at public hospitals”

Short-term visitors to pay for own COVID-19 treatment as MOH “prioritises resources at public hospitals”

 

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