Critical limit exceeded – Berlin’s corona warning traffic light for intensive care beds turned red for the first time at the weekend! Over a quarter (25.3 percent) of the beds in the intensive care units were occupied by Covid-19 patients!
By Boris Dombrowski and Axel Lier
Great confusion: According to the values updated on Sunday evening, the number has fallen to 24.2 percent, the warning light is yellow again.
Nevertheless, the situation remains critical. Because in seven Berlin hospitals such as the Auguste-Viktoria-Klinikum or the DRK Kliniken Westend there are no longer any intensive care beds available for certain medical care – also close to corona sufferers!
This is shown by the so-called Divi intensive register, in which clinics nationwide can report bed shortages on a daily basis. According to this, only 152 of 1260 intensive care beds are free in Berlin!
More than twice as many intensive care patients as in spring
According to the Senate Health Authority, 304 Covid-19 patients are currently being treated in Berlin’s intensive care units, 241 of them with ventilation and 29 with Ecmo care (artificial lungs outside the body). This means that there are now more than twice as many Covid 19 intensive care patients as during the first phase of the pandemic – the peak in April was 150 cases.
Health Senator Dilek Kalayci (53, SPD) is alarmed: “The persistently high numbers of infections are leading to increasing utilization of the intensive care beds for more and more seriously ill patients,” she wrote on Twitter on Sunday. She appealed to everyone to wear a mask “ideally everywhere” and to keep their distance.
The situation is serious: “The hospitals in the city are already required to postpone planned, medically justifiable interventions,” said Barbara Ogrinz, spokeswoman for the Berlin Hospital Society. Some clinics even have admission freezes for patients. Reasons for this: “Isolation wards, sick employees or employees in quarantine and keeping beds free are currently restricting capacities in many houses,” Ogrinz said of the BZ
► Virologist warns: Particularly high risk of infection for seniors at Christmas
► Nursing staff are missing! Berlin clinic threatens admission freeze
At the same time, however, she assures: “Emergency care is still guaranteed because patients are taken to other hospitals from the start.”
Problem for fire brigade
A situation under which the Berlin fire brigade groans, because: “Our ambulances now drive to the hospitals that have capacity – unfortunately these are sometimes not the closest ones,” said spokesman Thomas Kirstein to the BZ. Often you have to cross with the patients through the city. The employees are on the road longer in the vehicles and cannot report quickly for further assignments. Kirstein: “The system is shaking and that’s why we often have to declare a state of emergency in the emergency services.”
Stop recording. That could even threaten the Vivantes Clinic in Neukölln, one of the largest hospitals in Germany. There, 85 percent of all 1200 beds are said to be occupied. “The problem is not the occupied beds, but a lack of nursing staff,” says Vivantes doctor and works council member Thomas Werner to the “Tagesspiegel” and gives the figures: “Around 15 percent of the nursing staff are absent on most wards – because they are sick themselves or are in quarantine .
Confusion at Corona traffic lights
Within a few hours on Sunday one of the three Corona traffic lights jumped from yellow to red and then back again. How can that be?
On Saturday, around 5 p.m., the health administration tweeted: “There are technical problems with the daily Covid-19 status report. We’ll submit the report afterwards… ”However, that didn’t happen until Sunday around 1pm. Accordingly, the traffic light, which shows the occupancy rate of the intensive care beds, jumped to red, showed 25.3 percent.
A little later, the administration published the Sunday numbers. And then the value had dropped back to 24.2 percent.