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AMAL acquire 30 new ventilators for Algarve hospitals, increasing capacity by 50%

corona ventilatorThe Algarve Intermunicipal Community (AMAL) met, at the end of Monday this week, with the Regional Health Administration (ARS) of the Algarve and the Board of Directors of the Algarve University Hospital Centres (CHUA) to discuss the evolution of COVID-19 in the region.

The mayors of the 16 Algarvian municipalities expressed to the Regional Health Administration of the Algarve and to the Algarve’s hospitals’ Board of Directors their willingness to help in whatever manner they can to meet the healthcare systems needs in the fight against the virus.

In this sense, AMAL will be acquiring 30 new medical ventilators to add to the almost 60 that are present within the Algarve’s hospital hospitals, increasing the installed capacity in the region by 50%.

Paulo Morgado, head of ARS Algarve, and Ana Paula Gonçalves, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of CHUA, informed the Algarve’s mayors about the measures that have been, and are being, implemented in the Hospitals of Faro and Portimão as part of the mitigation phase, announcing “the creation of specific care services in the emergency rooms of the two hospitals and in the primary health care units”. Moreover: “Teleconsultations were also implemented and the number of non-urgent surgeries was reduced”.

In this context, the hospital officials again appealed to the “need to sensitize populations to reduce travel to health services to only the essentials”, stressing that “80 percent of the population infected by the new coronavirus will not need hospital care, exhibiting mild symptoms that can be monitored from home”.

The concern now centres on “the remaining 20 percent who will need increased care. It is estimated that 5 percent of the total infected will need a ventilator”, and the hiring of more equipment of this nature has already been contracted.

Collaboration with private health units has also been articulated, in order to fill possible equipment or accommodation needs of patients with other pathologies because, at this stage, all patients with COVID-19 are aiming to be treated by the National Health Service.

Although the ARS Algarve and CHUA have already ensured an increase in their response capacity with regard to the creation of inpatient units (beds and equipment) to receive patients infected with the virus, the mayors of the Algarve, concerned with the situation, committed themselves in this meeting, “to develop all possible efforts within their reach to increase the logistical means that CHUA will begin installing from this Wednesday”.

AMAL expresses “its public thanks for all the effort, hard work, and dedication shown by all health professionals in this fight”.

The mayors also call on the entire population of the Algarve to assume, in their habits and behaviours, “the recommendations of the General Directorate of Health (DGS), namely the basic rules of personal hygiene and social distancing, avoiding unnecessary travel to events or services, with a view to their own protection and to contain the spread”.