Watch: 13 patients in intensive care in 3 ITU wards

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

Thirteen patients who have contracted coronavirus are in critical care, Deputy Prime Minister and Health Minister Chris Fearne told reporters on Wednesday.

Three units are currently in use at Mater Dei Hospital – the normal one used for all patients and two additional Covid-19 units. There are still two Covid-19 ITUs that are not being used, Fearne said, adding “we hope we won’t have to use them”. He added that a number of individuals are breathing through the help of a ventilator.

The number of elective surgeries has been decreased while healthcare workers from other departments were brought to work in intensive care.

Asked about the reporting of coronavirus-related deaths in the evening, Fearne said that the time of day does not matter, as long as the government continues to report the fatalities in a transparent and regular manner.

He underlined that each death is a tragedy not only for the family but also for the health care professionals and the government who is doing all it can to minimize the number of fatalities.

‘Each infection, each person who is hospitalized and each person who passes away is a source of concern for me. We’re doing the best we can to save lives,’ Fearne said.

Too early to say

The Deputy Prime Minister said that it was still too early to say whether bars would be allowed to reopen on 1 December, though he noted that unlike in other countries, the number of weekly new cases has remained stable. He remarked that though there were days where the numbers shot up to 200 or down to 60, the average in the past month was of around 130 cases per day.

Over the coming days, the government is expected to announce the next step and whether more measures will be introduced to curb the spread of the virus within the community.

A new center from where rapid tests will be carried out will open in the northern region while rapid testing will also be made available in Gozo, Fearne also announced. To date there are 6 centers carrying out PCR tests and a rapid testing center at Boffa Hospital.

Malta has registered 173 new infections on Wednesday, up from the 110 cases reported the day before. The health ministry also reported one coronavirus-related death.

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