NL's hospitalized Covid patients enough to fill two hospitals, ICU boss says
The Netherlands currently counts enough hospitalized coronavirus patients to completely fill around two hospitals, Ernst Kuipers, head of the National Acute Care Network, explained to NU.nl. While that number is high, the Dutch healthcare system is in a much better position than it was when the pandemic first hit the country in March, he said.
In total, about 700 coronavirus patients are currently being treated in Dutch hospitals. "An average large regional hospital has 300 to 400 inpatient beds. These are two very large hospitals full of patients who are seriously ill and need intensive care 24/7," Kuipers said to the newspaper.
In order to keep regular care running, the national coordination center for patient distribution LCPS started distributing patients across the Dutch hospitals on Wednesday. "Every day we move between 15 and 25 patients. It mainly concerns clinical patients. These are patients who are seriously ill, but not so serious that they are on a ventilator in an intensive care unit," Kuipers said.
The Netherlands' healthcare system is in better shape than during the first coronavirus wave - there are more test locations, and hospitals now have more and better knowledge on how to treat the virus. There are also better stocks of protective gear, medicines and respirators.
But the only way to reduce pressure on the healthcare system, is for everyone to comply with the coronavirus measures and for the number of infections to go down, Kuipers said. On Wednesday, over 3,300 people tested positive for Covid-19, a new day record. So far the GGDs reported over 20 thousand new positive tests to the RIVM this week. "These numbers are too high."
According to Kuipers, the government's main goal is to keep pressure on the healthcare system as low as possible so that regular care can continue. And everyone benefits from that, he said. "If something happens to me or my parents, I want there to be sufficient care capacity available," he said.