There are now more than 2,000 Covid-19 patients in Irish hospitals for the first time, HSE CEO Paul Reid has confirmed.
s of this morning, there are 2,023 patients with the virus receiving care in hospital, with over 400 receiving help to breathe from high-grade ventilation and respiratory supports.
There are just 22 free ICU beds across the hospital system, latest HSE data shows, with 193 people in ICU with the virus and 108 of those are ventilated.
There were 12 hospitals across the country with no ICU beds free, despite national critical care surge plans being in effect, as of last night.
Only seven hospitals in the nation had more than one available ICU bed as of 6:30pm last night.
Mr Reid said that the health service is working “really hard” to remain in control.
“2,023 patients are now in hospital with Covid-19. Over 400 are receiving high grade ventilation & respiratory support inside & outside of ICU. Our national critical care surge plans are activated. We’re working really hard to remain in control. Your help counts,” the HSE boss said in a tweet this morning.
Dr Ian Counihan, Clinical Lead Covid-19, at Our Lady of Lourdes said the Drogheda hospital is in a degree of surge due to the amount of wards dedicated to Covid.
The hospital had the highest number of Covid-19 admissions in the country three of the last seven days as Louth experiences a surge in case numbers.
Dr Counihan said that some patients who do not have Covid-19 are being moved from ICU to coronary care to be treated there with ventilators.
The Consultant respiratory physician says it appears that the rate of admissions across the country does appear to be plateauing or slowing down since the start of the weekend.
Dr Counihan confirmed that this wave is seeing a lot more younger people becoming seriously ill with the virus.
“There’s a large group of younger people that are admitted with Covid pneumonia. We have patients in their 20s, 30s and 40s in the hospital on oxygen but certainly, for the last week, we’re seeing an increase in those in their 70s and 80s.
“It is a huge stretch on our staff – we’ve been doing this for almost a year now,” he told Morning Ireland.
Dr Counihan says the degree to which how sick patients are is causing hospital staff a lot of stress.
He said that on average last week, 20 patients were on their wards that would have been usually in ICU or High Dependency Units due to how sick they are but the space is not there to allow for that now.
Source: Irish News