Many danes can look to Italy or China be concerned whether we, too, can be hit by a genuine epidemic, with tens of thousands of people infected, of which several thousand are life-threatening sick and therefore in need of being admitted to the hospital a few hundred intensive care units.
So, Ekstra Bladet has asked Søren Brostrøm, director of the national board of Health, whether he is gone in time to provide for more intensivsengepladser, which can be used in the event that a peak with several thousand critical coronavirus-sick at the same time?
- Yes, we have for several weeks been preparing to be able to expand our capacity, both when it concerns the personnel and the equipment. We have asked the regions to look at what they can buy of respirators, and it should not be the financial opportunities that restrict such purchases, he responds.
- We can make use of several respirator-machines, and they are, for example, on the general operating rooms, which are staffed with a doctor and a nurse who can respirator-treat patients who are ill with the coronavirus. Operations to be conducted on these living rooms can be delayed, so the patients with coronavirus can get intensive care here, " explains Søren Brostrøm.
- it Can be considered that the design of extra intensivsengepladser in the temporary barracks outside the hospitals?
- No, not for intensive treatment. But it can also be the case that we are at the hospitals accommodate extra beds with ventilators at the places, which have not previously been intensivsengepladser, he responds.
He says that some patients in the event of a ’peak’ must prepare, to be printed quickly.
- We will change the threshold for when the other patients are discharged from the hospitals. Unfortunately. Already some patients that are discharged too early, then they get into a municipal akutfunktion or receive municipal home care. It can happen in the big game and become a very big task for the municipalities.
He warns that the treatment of non-life-threatening diseases can be postponed.
- Planned surgery as for example the hip, hernia, knee, and galdestensoperationer can be deferred, although the diseases are very troublesome for people. It may be that you have such severe osteoarthritis, you can not go on the job and have to take ibuprofen to get out of the beds. Such diseases, which affect people's quality of life negatively, it may be that we must defer.
- Plan to summon retired doctors and nurses?
- we will definitely do. It is already in the plans, to retired health professionals can be called in. The regions are about to look at it. Also people who have gone part-time can come to to get on full time. Full-time employees can go on double time there could be a number of merarbejdsaftaler with your health care professional. We can draw on employees from other sectors, for example, from the specialist practice.
- What with Armed forces doctors and their other health care professionals?
- It is also a part of the plans. Them we can and we will clearly also convene, if necessary. I expect a very high level of accountability and willingness from the skilled health workers who will step in when the need is there. They will know that a epedemi will have an end. And that there will be a significant backlog of overtime to be settled.
- Can demand to private hospitals and smaller private clinics will cease to carry out cosmetic operations and putting brackets on their capacity to deal with coronaviruspatienter?
- we would be able to, but I actually expect that we do not need to require it. The expectation is that the volunteer will be very constructive and solve an important responsibility for society, says the Health director.
- What about yourself?
- I can as a gynecologist and obstetrician in principle also be called upon to treat patients, but I think, that you estimate that I have other important tasks to look after. Currently, I am working 14-16 hours a day. If I had another position where I was not so important, I would completely clear me sign on the tab, he says.
How concerned are you right now?
- I'm not worried. I am sure that we are doing it. Both in healthcare and in society.
- But it is surely not, unfortunately, all that does it?
- But unfortunately I have to be honest. If this thing hits us hard, there will be people who become critically ill and die. We can see this by considering the development in Italy, where there are many dead. We follow it by the hour and are ready to change the strategy as soon as it becomes necessary. And there is no doubt that it can be very hard for the Danish health care before, during and after an epidemic, but we are doing it.