As the number of corona infections increases, so does the number of people suffering from Covid-19 in intensive care units in northern Germany. NDR.de shows the current status of occupancy in Hamburg, Bremen, Lower Saxony, Schleswig-Holstein and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.
The German Interdisciplinary Association for Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine (DIVI) is key in one Register for all of Germany, how many intensive care beds are occupied and how many are still free. “We are only informed on a daily basis that intensive care beds can also be operated, for which there is also the appropriate equipment and qualified staff,” said DIVI spokesman Torben Brinkema. The participating hospitals report their capacities daily after they have dispatched the staff.
DIVI statistics: so many intensive care beds are occupied
In the statistics of the DIVI population register, two values are of central interest: the bed occupancy of the intensive care units overall and the occupancy of corona patients. The following table compares the two indicators for Schleswig-Holstein, Hamburg, Bremen, Lower Saxony and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. It also shows how many of those affected need ventilation. (However, this column is omitted in the mobile phone display)
Corona intensive care patients with and without ventilation
How many Covid 19 patients are treated in intensive care in the five northern countries? The dark blue line shows the total number of all those affected over the past few months, the light blue the severe cases, which require artificial ventilation.
Many Covid-19 intensive care patients in Hamburg and Bremen
The next graphic shows the number of patients in the five northern federal states over time at a glance. To make the data comparable, they are based on 100,000 inhabitants. The curves of the city-states of Hamburg and Bremen are usually higher than those of the larger states, so there are the most severe corona cases in relation to the total population.
If there are more corona infections, the number of those who end up in the intensive care unit will grow with a delay, explained Stefan Kluge, Director of the Clinic for Intensive Care Medicine at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE) in an interview with NDR.de. “We know that the number of new infections affects the number of intensive care beds after about ten days,” said Kluge. “A patient who shows symptoms today has about a two percent risk of ending up in the intensive care unit.”
County map: where the intensive care units are full
To see where intensive care care is most likely to reach its limits, it is worth taking a look at our district map, which shows in color gradations how high the proportion of occupied, operable intensive care beds in the respective district is. The card includes both Covid-19 cases and other sick people.
The lightest color level stands for an occupancy of up to half of all usable beds, the darkest for 90 percent or more. A big city like Hamburg generally has significantly more intensive care places than rural regions, so it can be explained that the color in Hamburg can be lighter, although in absolute numbers significantly more affected people are treated there than in any other northern German region.
If you move the mouse over the districts, you can also find out how many Covid patients are currently being treated in intensive care units in the respective district and how many of them have to be ventilated. It is important to take into account that an intensive care unit can be completely occupied with treating other patients.
Intensive bed occupancy in Germany
The relationship between regular operation and additional Covid patients can determine how much pressure the intensive care units in a particular region are under. The following map gives an overview of the utilization of intensive care units throughout Germany.
Bed capacities of individual hospitals at a glance
The data in the DIVI population register can be broken down even more precisely: The following map shows in which hospitals the intensive care units currently have capacities (green), and where these are limited (yellow) or exhausted (red). If you move the mouse pointer over the points, further details appear: the name of the respective clinic and the bed availability in the three care levels low, high and ECMO.
The ECMO method is used in particularly severe cases when conventional ventilation is no longer possible. The blood is pumped out of the body via a catheter, bypassing the lungs, enriched with oxygen and returned. If the mouse-over at ECMO says “no information”, it is likely that the hospital does not have this technology.