COVID patients in intensive care declining, says expert

COVID patients in intensive care declining, says expert

COVID patients in intensive care declining, says expert

The number of patients being treated for COVID-19 in hospitals’ intensive care units (ICU) has been declining in Turkey, an expert has said, citing the vaccinations as the main reason for the improvement in the situation.

In line with fewer patients, intensive care occupancy in hospitals has dropped to the lowest level since the start of the pandemic.

“Many hospitals are closing ICUs they initially set up, particularly for the coronavirus patients. For instance, there is only one COVID patient in intensive care at our hospital,” said Professor Oktay Demirkıran from Cerrahpaşa Medical School in Istanbul, who is also the head of the Turkish Society of Intensive Care.

As pressure from COVID-19 is easing, beds in ICUs are now available to patients who need surgeries, which had to be postponed due to the pandemic, Oktay said.

He praised the jab drive, “successfully coordinated” by the Health Ministry.

“The number of COVID patients has declined thanks to higher vaccination rates. It helps us a lot. Indeed, there are still infections, but they are not likely to climb to a critical level,” Oktay said.

Meanwhile, Professor Selma Turan from the Health Ministry’s Science Board said the board had not convened in the past five weeks because there is no situation that requires board members to meet and take decisions on the pandemic.

Launched two years ago in the wake of COVID-19, the board advises the government on the pandemic. Its last meeting was held on March 2. After the meeting, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca announced the removal of the outdoor mask mandate.

“Since the last meeting, hospitalizations and admission to ICUs have declined. By looking at this trend, I think the pandemic is becoming an endemic now,” Turan said.