The Ministry of Health has informed Suwa Seriya and other ambulance services to contact the Regional Epidemiologist or the Medical Office of Health prior to bringing in COVID-19 patients to main hospitals in the Western Province.
Speaking at a media briefing today, Deputy Director General of Medical Services at the Health Ministry Dr. Lal Panapitiya said a rapid rise in the number of coronavirus patients being brought into hospitals has been witnessed within a short period, adding that the number of patients with complications is also significantly high.
Dr. Panapitiya added patients being admitted lately are increasingly in need of oxygen, especially in the Western Province.
Dr. Panapitiya said during discussions with medical professionals in the Western Province, a decision was reached for ambulances to first contact the Regional Epidemiologist or the Medical Office of Health prior to admitting patients.
However the Deputy Director General noted that patients in critical condition should be admitted to hospital without delay.
Meanwhile, responding regarding a video circulating from the Ragama Teaching Hospital, Dr. Lal Panapitiya said the video from several days ago, was from the first ward that patients are initially admitted to.
He stated that a generalisation cannot be made of all hospital wards being similar, adding that this situation was faced as the coronavirus caseload suddenly spiked.
Dr. Panapitiya added that facilities at hospitals are limited when cases rise significantly, adding that congestion is common at hospitals even before COVID-19.