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HÀ NỘI — Vice Chairman of Hà Nội People's Committee Chử Xuân Dũng has asked local authorities and health units to rearrange human resources to avoid COVID-19 cases failing to get timely treatment.
He made the order on Thursday evening during a COVID-19 meeting, as case numbers rise across the capital city, and the local health capacity appears to be overwhelmed in many areas, resulting in public complaints.
For the past two weeks, the city has led the country in terms of new cases, with daily confirmed infections reaching 3,000, despite a high vaccination rate.
Between January 1 and 12, the city recorded 2,836 daily COVID-19 cases on average, up by over 600 compared to the previous cycle of reporting, according to the deputy director of the municipal health department Vũ Cao Cương.
Currently, Hà Nội has 53,515 active COVID-19 cases, including 351 people being treated at central-level hospitals based in Hà Nội, and 52,964 cases being managed and treated at different levels, of which 42,652 people are being treated at home, 5,820 people at district-level hospitals, 1,335 people at health clinics, and 3,157 at city hospitals.
Cương said despite rising cases, the rate of deaths and severe disease cases were well within control.
A total of 294 deaths have been recorded in the city among the 79,923 COVID-19 patients confirmed since the start of the fourth wave of infections in late April last year, accounting for 0.36 per cent. Most deaths occur with people aged 80 years and higher, with underlying health conditions, or the unvaccinated.
Most hospitals in Hà Nội are maintaining a 'dual model' – with separate wing for COVID-19 treatment, while normal examination and treatment for people goes on as usual.
Vice Chairman Xuân Dũng demanded that the management of COVID-19 patients be done according to protocols, with no errors allowed.
In order for COVID-19 patients to have timely access, adequate care, and not be frustrated, the Vice Chairman of Hà Nội People's Committee requested units to re-adjust the way they operate and reallocate human resources to prevent overloading.
Head of municipal health department Trần Thị Nhị Hà said the focus right now was to better manage COVID-19 cases to minimise patients needing to be moved to higher levels of COVID-19 treatment, especially home-treatment cases, and get vaccines to the home-bound.
The same day, Deputy Minister of Health Nguyễn Trường Sơn along with the ministry's delegation had a meeting with Hà Nội People's Committee on COVID-19 in the city.
Hà Nội's health sector proposed the Ministry of Health assign central-level hospitals to direct and support the city's hospitals both in reception of COVID-19 patients (severe, critical), and training and improving professional capacity in intensive care, dialysis and infection control,
Representatives of the health ministry suggested Hà Nội set up a command centre for pandemic prevention and control, and at the same time connect treatment briefings between Hà Nội and central-level hospitals (assigned by the Ministry of Health to support Hà Nội) to exchange expertise and experience in treating patients and facilitate patient referrals.
They also proposed Hà Nội establish a palliative care centre for the very old with severe underlying health conditions.
The ministry would direct hospitals under its management to allocate beds for COVID-19 patients from Hà Nội, as well as provide necessary training to the city's healthcare workers.
Sơn said the human resources should be mobilised for the health units and pandemic control efforts and mobile medical stations, while for administrative tasks, other people and units can be utilised to help relieve pressure. — VNS
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