Ethiopia: Hospital, Staff Shouldering Burden of Fighting Covid-19

Yom Fisseha, a graduating medical student at St Paul's Hospital's Millennium Medical College was recently infected by corona virus while giving treatment for mothers giving birth. Due to various symptoms of the virus, many people are affected during the past six months particularly in the Millennium College and nation in general.

"As the disease is serious, I am always afraid that I would die in the isolation center, particularly when I was taking oxygen for better treatment. In this regard, not only me but also many positive citizens are affected by psychological impacts and like tension, as they presume that the disease is like evil."

According to Yom, the number of cases is increasing from time to time while it has a serious impact on better service delivery for patients. Currently, the Millennium College has been delivering one Doctor to 30 patients for treatment. It shows that adequate quality care services are not properly delivered to the patients. Therefore, it needs additional physicians and isolation centers as well as providing awareness creation to the societies more than ever.

Since the outbreak of coronavirus, health sector is among the various sectors that have been challenged by the pandemic. Various sectors including Health have been implementing their own strategies in order to fight the virus aims to achieve the goals. In this regard, St Paul's Millennium Medical College has been playing crucial role in the cause of coronavirus testing parallel to other medical services.

Surgeon and Deputy Provost of Health Sector at St Paul's Millennium Medical College Dr. Berhantsehaye T/Wold told The Ethiopian Herald that the working capacity of the institute has been increasing from time to time along with the spread of coronavirus.

According to the Deputy Provost (Medical Director), similar to other tertiary hospitals in the nation, different health services are given in the Medical College during the past years. But, following the outbreak of COVID-19, the Millennium College somehow stopped some other services like non-serious operations. In this way, it has given service for 2,000 patients per day until the outbreak of the pandemic. But it is impossible after the occurrence of corona virus while it shifts serious attention to fight the pandemic during the past six months.

"The virus entered into the country two months after it spread in other countries which was a good opportunity for the country to prepare its own system to combating the pandemic efficiently. In this regard, the Medical College carried out coronavirus testing to more than 25,000 citizens during the past six months. It has also provided adequate sanitizer and hand washing material in the whole entrances to fight the virus. However, following some ceremonial events like religious holidays and persistence of conflict in some areas then the number of cases is increasing from time to time. It means, it has needed additional health physicians and isolation centers. Therefore, the Medical College rented schools for quarantine service in addition to identifying the serious cause, non-COVID patients and maternity and child care services. In this way, more than 70 mothers who are infected by the virus are enabled to keep their children in the hospital."

Furthermore, over 11,000 mothers are allowed to keep their children under medical college treatment during the past year. Out of the total number, 450 have brought their children through operation. It was exceeded by 1,000 compared to the total services in the past similar year. Generally, it succeeds 10,000 operation services during the past year at all levels.

It is the only Medical College that has been giving dialysis service. In this regard, hospitals send many patients who have coronavirus causes and with kidney problems. Therefore, more than 900 patients are able to be vaccinated during the past three months. Out of this total number, over 100 of them have taken dialysis service during the past three months.

He further added that lack of adequate medical equipment and oxygen is a serious problem which hinders the provision of more coronavirus testing so far. Particularly, shortage of equipment takes the lion's share. To reduce the problem, it attempted to prepare some utilized medical material from local sources.

Currently, the Medical College has more than 270 physicians who have been engaged on coronavirus treatment for patients. However, they are one-third of the total number of physicians required to treat the available number of patients. In order to increase their working capacity, Medical College provides different training for them. In addition to this, it has also inclusive college students' to give the service more than ever.

It has also formed a task force in order to evaluate the daily treatment of the patients and assessing the quality of care and number of death rate once in two weeks.

He recalled that the country is the first African nation which has taken initiative to the ongoing measures of combating the pandemic. Therefore, a concerned bodies should have playing significant role so as to mitigate citizens' problems with aims to fight the common pandemic, COVID-19.

Currently, industries started to produce medical equipment like masks in different parts while it has a decisive role in reducing shortage of medical equipment and market stabilization.

More From: Ethiopian Herald

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