Worst case scenarios and emergency staffing are once again the topic of discussion among health experts in Cyprus, with hospitalizations reaching new records for summer at a time when medics are taking vacation.
The health ministry in the Republic of Cyprus announced 4 deaths and 1046 new covid cases on Thursday, with 264 patients infected with the virus getting treatment in hospitals at near 90% capacity since the start of the pandemic.
According to Kathimerini Cyprus, officials and health experts have been paying close attention to the preparedness of the healthcare system as well as speeding up vaccinations, with the overall situation said to be similar to that of Easter earlier this year when the government had to rush into a third lockdown.
Kathimerini’s Apostolos Tomaras reported on Thursday that hospital admissions were of particular concern, as there were ten more patients on average going in compared to those recovering and being sent home.
Experts had been expecting that hospitalizations would stabilize at about 250 when daily detected infections wouldn’t exceed 1000 cases.
Hospital admissions were of particular concern, as there were ten more patients on average going in compared to those recovering and being sent home
“In both indices, daily figures are moving just below the threshold, and this is why the predominant view is that the period right up until the end of the month will decide the endurance of the system but also the pandemic,” Tomaras wrote.
Previous reports said health officials believed the system could possibly absorb the impact as long as cases wouldn’t start passing the thousand mark.
But additional media also reported that as more hospital beds were being designated for COVID patients, more doctors and nurses were also taking vacation in the summer, with health officials moving forward with plans to approve a budget to hire more healthcare workers.
Health Minister Michalis Hadjipantela was scheduled to hold an emergency meeting Friday morning at 11am, where staffing would be discussed.
Reports said a plan to offer incentives for doctors and nurses from both the public sector and private practice was approved by State Health Services Organization on Thursday, but questions remained as to how quickly hired medics could get to work at a moment’s notice.
State unions have also been taking part in the dialogue, while reports said the health minister has already agreed with non-exempt nurses on overtime pay for as long as hospitalizations would remain high.