Müzeyyen Yüce / DUVAR'It's not coronavirus but starving that I am afraid of'
The capacity of intensive care units in Turkey have been under scrutiny, with experts pointing to the shortcomings that may emerge if the number of coronavirus cases continue to increase in the country.
There are a total of 39,279 intensive care beds in hospitals, with 16,238 in private ones and 6,154 in universities. Some 24,965 beds that are in state and private hospitals are eligible for treating adults.
Turkey's Health Ministry has requested hospitals to prepare their intensive care units and postpone surgeries that are not urgent.
Prof. İsmail Cinel, the head of Turkish Society of Intensive Care, said that they don't expect any problems if the beds are used rationally, while others disagreed with him.
Main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) deputy Fikret Şahin, who is also a medical doctor, said that the beds will be left insufficient if the number of cases exceed 250,000.Turkey reports second death from coronavirus as cases surge to 191
“There are currently 39,000 intensive care beds in Turkey, but only 24,000 of those are suitable for adults. If the number of diagnosis exceed 250,000, our capacity will be insufficient. Problems may emerge then,” Şahin told Duvar, adding that five percent of the coronavirus patients require treatment in intensive care.
“Some 14 percent also need to be treated at a hospital. When we look at it this way, the upcoming three to four weeks is crucial. No country's health infrastructure would be sufficient in an unexpected increase,” he added.
Şahin also said that the number of cases may increase if the people don't abide by the rules put forward by the Health Ministry.
Another CHP deputy who is also a doctor, Ali Şeker, pointed to the need for ventilators.
"The intensive care capacity needs to be increased urgently. Those who are infected experience breathing difficulties. Hence, the fact that there are 24,000 intensive care beds doesn't mean that there are that many ventilators. I guess they are half the number of the beds," Şeker told Duvar.Prosecutors launch investigation into report on pilgrims defying self-quarantine
Gönül Erden, co-chair of the Healthcare Workers Union (SES), said that one of the most important problems is the shortcomings in health personnel.
"Health personnel won't be enough for everyone in case of a crisis," Erden said, adding that healthcare workers who were dismissed from their posts with state of emergency decrees should be reinstated to their posts.
"The lack of medical personnel would be removed this way," she added.