Tygerberg Hospital has refuted claims that its hospital beds are filled by COVID-19-positive patients, or that four staff members have died allegedly as a result of the virus.
“To date, only one staff member died and despite the pandemic, the hospital is still continuing to provide 24-hour emergency services to the public and its patients in hospital,” it said.
While the hospital has denied its beds are full of COVID-19 patients, staff are reporting that it is under pressure as it needs more nurses.
As reported by News24, over 200 nurses at the hospital have already been off ill from work. Whether this is COVID-19 related, however, is unclear.
A staff member informed News24 that the hospital has 48 intensive care unit (ICU) beds, and that 25 of these are reportedly occupied by coronavirus patients. It is reported that the hospital’s wards are also full.
This means those who are in need of ICU beds may not have access to one “until someone dies”.
It is also reported that a tent that was erected for screening and testing has been turned into a field hospital because there is an alleged lack of beds, and all departments are assisting with screening and swabbing.
Hospital management was concerned about their employees’ health and safety, according to a staff member, and were mindful to ensure a safe work environment in line with the departmental guidelines, while also emphasising adherence to COVID-19 safety measures to prevent transmission in the workplace.
Picture: Western Cape Gov