The increasing influx of COVID-19 patients is causing great concern in Eindhoven’s Catharina Hospital. The hospital has been forced to scale down part of the regular care.
On Friday, there were 57 COVID-19 patients, 17 in ICU, in the hospital. “It’s a worrying situation,” says Odette Vermeijlen, COVID-19 manager at Catharina Hospital. “It forces us to transfer staff from regular care to acute COVID-19 care.”
“We’d rather not do that because now we have to postpone regular care. This waiting lists increase significantly in recent weeks.” The steady growth in the COVID-19 patient numbers started a few weeks ago and hasn’t yet stabilised.
Still gradually climbing
“It’s not a dramatic rise, but it is still rising. And it doesn’t look like it’s going to improve any time soon.” Expanding the ICU capacity isn’t yet an option. It’s, however, not being excluded either, says Vermeijlen. “We’re taking it day by day.”
The increased pressure is taking its toll on staff too. Certainly, because people, in general, have become COVID-19 weary. So, they’re not adhering to the preventative measures as strictly anymore. “We, of course, have no choice.
“We still apply strict rules in the hospital. That leads to discussions with the family and is not always easy,” she continues. The hospital’s medical personnel has been working under tremendous pressure for more than a year.
Translator: Melinda Walraven