it’s a day at the pandemic hospital in Madrid


Publication: Saturday February 20, 2021 2:20 PM

laSexta enters the intensive care unit of Isabel Zendal Hospital, where we witness a journey through the eyes of professionals and patients. After weeks of third wave revenue growth, acute arrivals of COVID-19 patients are now starting to decline.

At Zendal hospital, 26 COVID patients occupy the ICUs of this health center, which initially had a capacity of 12 beds. With the arrival of the third wave, they were forced to more than double these units, with a forecast even of reaching 40.

During our visit to Zendal, we met José Pedro, admitted to the centre’s ICU for over 30 days, a “veteran” who had a tracheotomy to try to improve his breathing. Now he begins to breathe without mechanical assistance.

Ignacio Pujol, ISU chief doctor at Isabel Zendal Hospital, tells us how they made this progress: “What we did was start to turn off the mechanical ventilation so he could breathe on his own.

However, there are other cases that are getting worse, as Alberto Balvís, from the Department of Anesthesiology and Resuscitation tells us. One patient overcame severe pneumonia after which he suffered from a resolved bleeding problem and is now infected with resistant bacteria. These are common sequelae that usually delay the discharge of these patients.

It is estimated that for every day that a patient spends in these units, then they need twice as much to return to normal life.

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