Czech Hospitals To Resume Routine Care and Scheduled Operations

Following disruption to patient care due to the coronavirus pandemic, Health Minister Adam Vojtech (ANO) announced yesterday that routine care and scheduled operations will soon resume in Czech hospitals. Photo: St. Anne’s hospital in Brno / KK. 

Czech Rep., Apr 15 (BD) – Having cancelled many non-essential hospital operations in mid-March (March 16th), the Ministry of Health will soon allow acute inpatient care facilities to again perform other elective treatments, announced Health Minister Adam Vojtech yesterday, though part of their capacity must still be reserved for confirmed cases of Covid-19. Outpatient care providers should also gradually move to restore normal operation. The Ministry of Health is also recommending extra precautionary measures, such as an electronic appointment system to ensure that as few people as possible are sharing waiting rooms.

Announcing the measures, Vojtech explained that: “while we have a national control room for intensive care capacity, and are monitoring the situation on a daily basis, we are also able to manage our capacity to allow healthcare providers to use some of it for patients other than Covid-19 patients.” 

Health experts have warned of the possible indirect health impact of Covid-19 from neglecting patients with other diseases. Heart and blood vessel diseases account for half of deaths in the Czech Republic, and there are also nearly a million with diabetes, and tens of thousands of new cancer cases diagnosed every year.

Vojtech said that the conditions for normal operation of health facilities to be resumed would not be met for some weeks, but that: “At that point it will be necessary to adapt [the functioning of our healthcare system] to meet current patient needs while ensuring maximum safety for healthcare workers.”

According to Cesky Rozhlas, hospitals have reserved around 2,000 beds for patients with serious cases of Covid-19, or patients with Covid-19 who are also suffering from other serious health problems. 428 patients with coronavirus were in hospital on Monday, 92 of them in intensive care. There are about 4,450 beds in intensive care wards (ICUs) in the country, and 2,080 lung ventilators.

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