Istanbul University turns operating tables into intensive care units amid concerning spike in COVID-19 numbers

Istanbul University's Cerrahpaşa Medical School is turning all operating tables into intensive care units in preparation for the increasingly concerning spread of COVID-19. The dean noted that the number of the hospital's intensive care patients has soared above the numbers in April.

A sign outside a Cerrahpaşa operating room reads "Red Zone, Attention COVID-19."

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Istanbul University's Cerrahpaşa Medical Faculty is turning operating tables into intensive care units as the COVID-19 pandemic soars to concerning levels, daily Sözcü reported on Nov. 30.

Cerrahpaşa Dean Prof. Sait Gönen noted that the number of their patients in intensive care has soared above what it was in April, considered the first peak in the pandemic in Turkey. 

"The number of intensive care patients is higher than in April when we rose to 36. Now, the number is above 40," Gönen noted.

While the hospital can handle up to 50 intensive care patients without employing the operating room tables, the transformation can allow up to 75 patients to be given intensive care.

The hospital has three operating tables in each OR, which can all be turned into intensive care units, the dean added. 

Most recently, the Health Ministry reported on Nov. 29 some 182 fatalities and 30,103 coronavirus infections in the space of 24 hours, including asymptomatic ones.