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New upgrade to hospitals increase Covid-ready beds

ECONOMYNEXT- Sri Lanka has increased the number of hospital beds available for Covid 19 patients to 12,500 with the opening of a new unit with 286 beds in Ampara today, officials said.

Additional Secretary (Medical Services) to the Ministry of Health Dr Sunil de Alwis told EconomyNext that the newly upgraded hospital has 3 Intensive Care Units (ICU) and 5 High Dependency Units (HDUs) for critically ill patients.

Both sets of units have the same equipment but HDUs usually have one nurse for two patients while ICUs have one on one nursing care.

Also speaking to EconomyNext Director of the Regional Health Services Empowerment Project, Dr Jayasundara Bandara said that the Ampara Rehabilitation Hospital premises have been developed to create this new COVID-19 treatment hospital.

He said that it is has been established as a level two hospital with specialist doctors, where COVID patients with certain symptoms can be treated.

However, he said that it would take seven more days for the hospital to start its operation fully as a COVID treatment hospital with 99 beds currently made available.

Dr Bandara is overseeing a World Bank-funded project launched by the Health Ministry to develop 750 hospitals countrywide by 2023.

Already, more than 160 hospitals around the country have been upgraded in the last two years by the project.

Moreover, said to EconomyNext that with the new number of beds made available through the hospital in Ampara there are about 12,500 beds earmarked for the treatment of COVID-19 patients in the country. (Colombo/Jan15/2021)

Reported by Imesh Ranasinghe

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