Hospital of Peja. Photo: BIRN.

Kosovo’s hospitals receive influx of COVID-19 patients

With the Infectious Disease Clinic in Prishtina nearing capacity, hospitals across Kosovo are treating more and more patients suffering from COVID-19.

According to a report from the University Clinical Centre of Kosovo, UCCK, published on Wednesday, 270 patients are currently being treated for COVID-19 across the country’s public hospitals.

186 patients are hospitalized with COVID-19 at UCCK in Prishtina, including 107 in the Infectious Disease Clinic, which had been housing the majority of patients until the recent increase in cases. Two patients in the clinic are in intensive care, while 55 are being treated with oxygen therapy. The clinic has eight beds in its intensive care unit, as well as 120 beds spread across six departments.

Due to the overspill, UCCK’s other wards are being used to treat patients with COVID-19, including 15 patients at the Sports Clinic, two of whom are using ventilators. In the respiratory diseases ward, 34 patients that have tested positive for coronavirus are being housed, all of whom are being treated with oxygen therapy.

According to the UCCK report, 22 patients with COVID-19 are being treated at the hospital in Prizren, while 19 are being treated in Gjakova, five in both Ferizaj and Gjilan, three in Mitrovica and one in Vushtrri.

The report also states that 29 patients are being treated in Peja. However, hospital spokesperson Naim Sahiti informed BIRN on Wednesday afternoon that 42 patients with COVID-19 are being treated in Peja hospital’s infectious disease ward, three of whom are receiving oxygen therapy.

Sahiti assured BIRN that the hospital was adequately equipped with the personal protective equipment required to treat COVID-19 patients. “We have protective equipment, we do not lack that,” he said. “We need equipment, but not for COVID-19 treatment. We need general equipment.”

The hospital has two ventilators, but one was sent to Prishtina due to a shortage at the Infectious Disease Clinic at UCCK, meaning there is currently just one available in Peja.

More bed space is also being created at the Peja hospital in case there is an increase in COVID-19 cases, with the ward usually reserved for treating respiratory conditions designated to take on patients in the case of higher demand for beds. 

“At the moment we have 34 free beds, but we have also created space in the respiratory ward if there is a need for treatment of patients,” said Sahiti.

The spokesman added that the hospital has reallocated staff from other wards, especially nurses, to help handle the increase in COVID-19 patients. Currently, only two infectious disease specialists work in Peja.

BIRN also learned on Wednesday that two doctors from the oncology clinic have tested positive for coronavirus and will self-isolate. In the last three days, 530 new cases of coronavirus have been reported by the National Institute of Public Health, with over 1,800 cases still active across the country.

and 08/07/2020 - 16:46

08 July 2020 - 16:46

Prishtina Insight is a digital and print magazine published by BIRN Kosovo, an independent, non-governmental organisation. To find out more about the organization please visit the official website. Copyright © 2016 BIRN Kosovo.