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Romanian officials will check all intensive care units after a fire killed 10 people at a hospital treating coronavirus patients, the government has said.
The fire broke out on Saturday at the ICU of the the Piatra Neamț county hospital in north-east Romania.
Six other intubated Covid-19 patients, who were injured, were transferred to another hospital. The doctor on call, who sustained severe burns as he tried to rescue the patients was flown to a specialised hospital in Belgium early on Sunday.
The government said public health inspectors and the agency for emergency situations would check the conditions under which medical equipment was operating in all ICUs from Monday.
Prosecutors said an investigation into the fire was underway.
Almost 13,000 Covid-19 patients were in hospital across Romania as of Sunday, including 1,169 in ICU. The country has reported 360,281 coronavirus cases since February and 8,926 deaths.
Even before the pandemic, Romania’s healthcare system had been under pressure, dogged by corruption, inefficiencies and politicised management.
The country has one of the EU’s least developed healthcare infrastructures. One in four Romanians have insufficient access to essential healthcare as tens of thousands of doctors, nurses and pharmacists have left since the country joined the EU in 2007.
On Sunday, the Romanian doctors’ association said a strategy was needed to build new medical infrastructure regardless of who was in government.
“At least now, let’s do things that are organised and planned … so that such tragedies don’t happen again,” it said.
Saturday’s fire was Romania’s deadliest since 2015, when 65 people were killed in a nightclub blaze in Bucharest.
Source: The Guardian
Keyword: Romania to check all intensive care units after Covid hospital fire | Romania