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HCMC's largest ICU becomes a Covid-19 battle zone

Created 21 July 2021
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As more and more patients are admitted to the HCMC Covid-19 Resuscitation Hospital, doctors and other medics are in a race to save as many lives as possible.

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The HCMC Covid-19 Resuscitation Hospital in Thu Duc City is treating more than 300 patients in its intensive care unit (ICU) just six days since it was established on the premises of the Oncology Hospital 2.
The hospital currently has 1,000 ICU beds and more than 530 medical workers.
Since the number of critically ill patients has been rising steadily of late, doctors, nurses and their assistants are on their toes doing everything they can to save the patient.
"There have been times when a patient just stops breathing and another patient needs to be intubated urgently, so all of us have to jump in," said doctor Tran Thanh Linh, deputy head of the hospital.

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It is planned that more equipment and 400 ICU beds will be added to the hospital.
To run at full capacity, the hospital will need 340 doctors and 1,200 nurses. The Ministry of Health will arrange human resources for the hospital.

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A doctor helps a patient struggling to breathe.
Medical staff working in shifts ensure that patients are closely watched round the clock.
"There have been cases when the patients are already been too critical when arriving at the hospital, and there was no way we could save them. Though this hurts us very badly, we need to get over it soon because we know there are still many others that need to be saved," a 25-year-old nurse said.

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Chung, a nurse who has his name written on the protective gown, studies the equipments that constantly track a patient’s status in the ICU.

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Chung helps a patient who has just escaped death drink some water.

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A nurse takes a rest but is still monitoring patients, watching equipment that track their vital signs.

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Aside from operating various equipment and giving medicines to patients, ICU nurses also have to take care of the patients’ personal hygiene and feed them.

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"We have to carefully keep close track of all the indicators in order to alert doctors immediately if there is anything abnormal. Patients are on constant dialysis so their heart rate and blood pressure can change easily," said Phuong, another ICU nurse.

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Doctor Linh checks a patient in order to decide the course of action if the situation gets worse or better.
Linh is among the team that saved the British pilot tagged "Patient 91" during the first coronavirus wave in Vietnam last year. He has just returned from the northern province of Bac Giang, the epicenter at the beginning of the ongoing wave before HCMC took over that mantle.
"The pressure was high back there [Bac Giang] but it is nothing compared to what is happening now in HCMC."
Linh explained that Bac Giang had around 5,000 Covid-19 patients in total when reaching its peak, and in most cases, they were workers in industrial parks, who were healthy and did not have many major health issues.
HCMC, meanwhile, has reported more than 37,000 cases and more are expected in the coming days. Many of the patients are elderly people with other chronic illnesses.

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Nurses keep daily records of each patient’s condition.

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Doctor Huynh Quang Dai said he and other medics in the ICU have been kept so busy with the high number of patients that he could not even recall how many days he had spent at the hospital.
"Every medic here is on a race as the number of patients has risen very fast. We cannot even tell how many hours we are able to actually sleep every night."

An ambulance at the gate to the hospital. Doctor Le Anh Tuan, deputy director of the Oncology Hospital 2, who now occupies the same position at the HCMC Covid-19 Resuscitation Hospital, said a part of the hospital was still operating normally to treat cancer patients. The two areas are completely separate from each other, and it is guaranteed that neither will have an impact on the other.

An ambulance at the gate to the hospital.
Doctor Le Anh Tuan, deputy director of the Oncology Hospital 2, who now occupies the same position at the HCMC Covid-19 Resuscitation Hospital, said a part of the hospital was still operating normally to treat cancer patients.
"The two areas are completely separate from each other, and it is guaranteed that neither will have an impact on the other."

 

Source: VNE

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