April 23, 2020

Chile’s Health Ministry completes the transfer of patients and announces that the first birth at Félix Bulnes Hospital

Chile’s Health Ministry completes the transfer of patients and announces that the first birth at Félix Bulnes Hospital
During their epidemiological report, the health officials alluded to the progress with the facility that began functioning last weekend as part of the COVID-19 Action Plan.

Yesterday saw the transfer of the final patients from the old to the new buildings of the Félix Bulnes Hospital, which started operating at the weekend. This forms part of the COVID-19 Action Plan, in which the implementation of the following five hospitals has been brought forward in order to better address the pandemic: Ovalle, Padre las Casas, Angol, Félix Bulnes and Gustavo Fricke.

In fact, Healthcare Networks Undersecretary Arturo Zúñiga announced that the first baby has already been born in the new hospital. The baby is called Elian and was born yesterday at 7.40 pm. «I’d like to take this opportunity to send my congratulations to his mother, María José», said the Undersecretary.

Additionally, the hospital is staffed by over two thousand workers every day to attend to the needs of the population of the municipalities of Renca, Quinta Normal and Cerro Navia, among others. “The Félix Bulnes team is meeting again in this space that has cutting-edge technology and is the most modern hospital in Chile,» the Undersecretary added.

COVID-19 Report

Turning to the daily report on the epidemiological situation due to the COVID-19 virus in Chile, the officials said that yesterday 464 new cases were registered in Chile, bringing the total number of people diagnosed with the disease to 11,296. So far 5,386 people have recovered, which corresponds to 48%.

In terms of the people in hospital, there are 399 patients in intensive care units, 309 of whom are connected to mechanical respirators and 66 of them are in a critical condition.

There are currently 545 ventilators available.

Health Care Networks Undersecretary Arturo Zúñiga regretted the death of 13 people during the last day, nine of them from the Metropolitan Region and the others from the Biobío, La Araucanía, Antofagasta and Valparaíso Regions. They bring the total number of deaths to 160 people.

In terms of diagnostic capacity, yesterday 6,365 CRP tests were carried out, increasing the total number of tests nationwide to 128,722, and the positive test rate stands at 8%. “This is one of the highest testing rates in Latin America. This has been highlighted in international reports, which accredit this,” said Undersecretary Zúñiga.

Following the daily report, Health Minister Jaime Mañalich said, “we need to recognize that we are in a completely unprecedented epidemiological situation, one in which history is being written, and every day we are learning what the right courses of action are.”

The Minister added, “I am fully aware of my defects and of the few virtues that I may have. But what I have absolutely clear is that this is the moment in which I have to be in charge of the Health Ministry and do everything possible, everything that is within my power and that of the whole team that accompanies us and that has been repeatedly congratulated by international authorities, to get Chile through this.”

Flu vaccination

Speaking about the flu vaccination campaign, the Health Minister reported that “we have met our target of vaccinating 80% of the population by April 30, as we have already reached 84%.”

Speaking about the difficulty of vaccinating children because of classes being suspended as a COVID-19 prevention measure, the Minister said that if the classes are not yet restarting, “this is the moment when parents can take their children in the 6-10 age range to the Family Health Centers to get them properly immunized.”

The Health Minister explained that so far 61% of children in the under-ten target age group have been immunized and there are one and a half million doses of vaccine in stock to reach the target of vaccinating children and pregnant women.