COVID: Usage of beds in ICU reaches 104 per cent

COVID: Usage of beds in ICU reaches 104 per cent

KUALA LUMPUR: The usage of beds by COVID-19 patients in the intensive care units (ICU) of government hospitals nationwide has increased from 96 per cent on May 24 to 104 per cent on Sunday (June 6), said Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.

He said the usage of more than 100 per cent of ICU beds was a worrying situation as not all patients in need of critical care could be placed in the ICU.

“However, the usage of beds by COVID-19 patients in general wards showed a slight decrease in the past two weeks, from 99 per cent to 89 per cent.”

Similarly, the bed occupancy rate at the COVID-19 Quarantine and Low-Risk Treatment Centres (PKRC) is at 54 per cent,” he said in a statement today.

According to Dr Noor Hisham, hospitals nationwide also faced an increase in categories four and five patients requiring oxygen and breathing assistance, especially among the vulnerable groups such as senior citizens and those with comorbidities.

He explained that these patients needed a longer time to recover due to serious health complications caused by COVID-19.Statistics from the National Crisis Preparedness and Response Centre (CPRC) showed that the average treatment period for category four patients was between 14 and 16 days while that for category five patients was from 19 to 26 days.

“The spread of COVID-19 and hospital capacity (especially ICU) to handle COVID-19 cases are at critical levels and can continue to increase if we become complacent even for a day.

“This situation cannot be taken lightly, especially if there are parties spreading inaccurate interpretations of the current situation,” he said.

Dr Noor Hisham said statistics also showed that the total number of positive COVID-19 cases in the 22nd epidemiology week dropped by 2.6 per cent or 1,379 cases compared to the previous week following the implementation of the Movement Control Order (MCO) 3.0.

However, during the same period, from May 30 to June 5, the number of active cases were found to have increased following a surge during the 20th and 21st epidemiology weeks.

“There were 57,022 active cases at the beginning of the 21st epidemiology week and, at the start of the 22nd epidemiology week, it rose to 78,017 cases, which is an increase of 20,995 cases or 37 per cent,” he said, adding that, as of today, a total of 82,797 active cases are still undergoing treatment and observation.– BERNAMA