In recent days it appeared that in some hospitals in Brussels or Antwerp there were already problems and patients were transferred to other hospitals to be able to guarantee the care. “In our hospital less than 15 percent of the beds in intensive care are occupied, there are almost 20 patients in the hospital and we plan to open a second COVID department this week,” says pulmonologist. Eva Van Braeckel from UZ Gent.
During the first wave, many more patients were admitted at the highest peak than now, so why are such drastic measures necessary? “We see a clear upward trend, but moreover: we are not going to be able to stop all other care as we did with the first wave,” says Van Braeckel. “There is a lot of concern about the collateral damage, delayed interventions and treatments. We still notice some of this deferred care in 1 in 2 patient contacts. “
“We really can’t do that a second time. So we’re going to have to combine the two, COVID care and non-COVID care, and that’s going to be a staggered position to cope with all of that”, warns Van Braeckel.