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Coronavirus: More ICU beds at Larnaca hospital (Updated)

Υπουργός Υγείας – Δηλώσεις // health min
Health Minister Michalis Hadjipantelas

Health authorities have decided to immediately deploy six more ICU beds at Larnaca general hospital and an additional six if needed later, as the Covid pandemic increases the pressure on the entire system, the minister said on Monday.

Health Minister Michalis Hadjipantelas said the decision was to immediately deploy six beds for the next two months while six more would be deployed if necessary.

“At a first stage, six ICU beds will be deployed at Larnaca general hospital, which are needed by the system and an additional six will be deployed, if necessary, under certain conditions,” the minister said.

The decision was made on Monday following a meeting at Larnaca hospital.

Hadjipantelas acknowledged the system was under pressure because of the rising cases on the island, as in other parts of the world “but if there is cooperation between all parties, just like today, I think we can solve any problems.”

Hadjipantelas said there were enough ventilators to equip the unit while more were expected from Germany next week.

“Larnaca will have the ICU it deserves since we are given this opportunity to bolster it to be a suitably equipped ICU.”

He also defended medical staff against criticism that huge queues were formed at vaccination centres and testing stations because of their small number.

Hadjipantelas appealed for understanding, saying doctors and nurses were human too, and they too got sick, were close contacts, or just needed a rest.

“These problems we have in Cyprus are much worse in other countries and we must be proud of the doctors and nurses we have and not fire at them at the first opportunity.”

The head of the state doctors’ union Sotiris Koumas said the deployment of the extra beds, which will remain after the pandemic, “something especially important for the development of the quality and safety levels of our country’s health system”.

Koumas said the solution decided on Monday would provide the necessary relief at present and will later be developed properly.

The union chairman stressed that the system must also deal with the non-Covid cases, which have been affected by the fact that most resourced were directed towards the pandemic.

Koumas said the system must be adjusted accordingly, including the private sector, to better serve all patients.

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