COVID-19: Poland is running out of ventilators: report

Polish daily “Rzeczpospolita” reports that the Polish hospitals are running out of ventilators for COVID-19 patients and the situation might become even worse.

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On Wednesday as many as 1,150 ventilators of a total of 1,663 were being used by patients. Moreover, as the Health Ministry reported, 13,931 out of 21,506 beds prepared for those with COVID-19 were taken.

Józefa Szczurek-Żelazko, a deputy Health Minister said that Poland, over the first months of the pandemic, made a decision to purchase additional equipment.

The daily reports, however, that these are pure statistics, because “the free spots are not always where the sickest patients are.” “Rzeczpospolita” quoted the provincial governor of Mazowieckie province in central Poland, who said that on Wednesday, only 12 ventilators were free along with 480 beds.

“There is a similar situation in Małopolskie province, [southern Poland], which also has 12 free ventilators and 449 beds. On the other hand, Wielkopolskie [Western Poland] has 96 available ventilators and 483 beds,” the newspaper wrote.

The daily also quotes the estimates of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Mathematical and Computational Modelling, which say that it is likely that the worst situation will be just before Christmas. “Rzeczpospolita” reports that it will be the period when the number of deaths and patients requiring intensive care will be the highest.

On Wednesday, Poland announced a record-breaking number of 18,820 new confirmed SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus infections, along with 236 fatalities, including 29 that were due to COVID-19 alone. The total number of infections reached 299,049 while the death toll – 4,851.