Left Menu
Development News Edition

'Overwhelming' COVID second wave floods Swiss hospitals

Swiss hospitals are scrambling to cope with a surge in new COVID-19 patients, bringing back retired staff to replace sick frontline workers and closing other wards as officials warn they could reach breaking point in about 10 days. Case numbers in Switzerland have risen to record levels this month, with infection rates far exceeding those in neighbours Germany and Italy.

Reuters | Updated: 28-10-2020 14:39 IST | Created: 28-10-2020 14:30 IST
'Overwhelming' COVID second wave floods Swiss hospitals
Representative Image. Image Credit: ANI

Swiss hospitals are scrambling to cope with a surge in new COVID-19 patients, bringing back retired staff to replace sick frontline workers and closing other wards as officials warn they could reach breaking point in about 10 days.

Case numbers in Switzerland have risen to record levels this month, with infection rates far exceeding those in neighbours Germany and Italy. The government is expected to announce new measures on Wednesday but has been criticised by medics and scientists for being too reluctant to impose strict nationwide rules.

At Geneva's University Hospital (HUG), in one of the worst-hit cantons, cases have increased more than six-fold in three weeks to 350 patients. "Everyone expected a second wave, but no one to my knowledge expected it to be so wild and so severe," director Bertrand Levrat told Reuters.

"Today, this wave is going to be probably bigger, maybe much bigger than the first wave," he said, describing a strained situation with exhausted medics and more than 400 COVID infections among staff. To cope, his facility is cutting elective surgeries, moving patients to private clinics and has called on retired workers even though they would be in the age bracket more vulnerable to the virus.

Nationally, about a third of intensive care units remain available but will be filled in the next ten days if the current infection rate persists, government delegate for the Coordinated Medical Services Andreas Stettbacher said on Tuesday. Similar warnings were issued earlier this year during the first outbreak, but then hospitals, propped up by army reservists, largely coped and many had spare capacity.

The situation is different this time around, doctors say. Marie Assouline Reinmann, a doctor at HUG, is concerned that complacency and scepticism about restrictions could lead to a spike in the number of infections.

"I fear that people take the situation less seriously and that it gets worse and worse here at the hospital," she said. "I would like people to realize that this second wave is here and it is already overwhelming us."

Confirmed cases in Switzerland and neighbouring Liechtenstein have surpassed 127,000, with a death toll above 1,900.


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Turbulence surrounding tobacco control in Ghana

... ...

Smart healthcare: IoT redefining the way healthcare is delivered

As the world is embracing the new wave of digitalization triggered by the pandemic and the arrival of 5G, the adoption of IoT devices will further boom. With adoption set to soar, IoT security issues and other challenges cant be ignored any...

Refugee compassion and response: Ideas to mitigate disasters now and in their future

Their homeland becomes a forbidden territory for them and more likely than not, their journey to foreign soil is no less traumatizing, not to say deadly. It is crucial to help refugees live a life of dignity and purpose....

Inadequate water infrastructure causes a tidal wave of coronavirus in rural Alaska

... ...

Videos

Latest News

PM reaches Hyderabad to visit Bharat Biotech plant

Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived here on Saturday as part of his three-city tour to take the stock of COVID-19 vaccine development. After landing at Hakimpet Air Force station here, he was received by Telangana Chief Secretary Somesh Ku...

Eastern Railway to resume non-suburban passenger train services from Dec 2

The Eastern Railway will resume non-suburban passenger train services from December 2 with 54 trains, an official said on Saturday. Non-suburban passenger train services were stopped in the last week of March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.Of...

Be Fit during Covid by these 6 Fitness Platforms at your home

Sitting inside the home for months and months have made people understand the need of being fit and fine, and with the need of an hour people have shifted towards everyday fitness, you might call it virtual or online fitness- a new and exci...

Sports News Roundup: Mickelson and Barkley cruise to victory in The Match; Argentine twins a living tribute to soccer great and more

Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.Ravens game at Steelers postponed due to COVID-19 outbreakThe Baltimore Ravens game versus hosts Pittsburgh Steelers has been moved to Tuesday from Sunday because of a COVID-19 outbreak w...

Give Feedback