Among the 954 deaths announced today, we have 100 deaths from Good Friday, 130 deaths from Easter Saturday and 130 deaths from Easter Sunday – said Wojciech Andrusiewicz, spokesman for the Ministry of Health on Thursday. On that day, the ministry informed about the death of 954 people infected with the coronavirus.
The Health Ministry confirmed on Thursday 27,887 new cases of coronavirus infection. The ministry also announced the death of 954 infected people. This is the largest number of deaths reported in one day since the beginning of the epidemic in our country.
“This tragic result is of course due to an upward trend”
The spokesman of the Ministry of Health, Wojciech Andrusiewicz, indicated during the press conference that “954 deaths, which we are announcing today, have never been given so far.” As he said, the upward trend is always the result of an increased number of infections, the number of hospitalizations progressing during the week and “just another week, another two weeks is, unfortunately, an increase in the number of people who have failed to cope with the coronavirus”.
He noted that this result was also influenced by reporting related to the holiday season, during which – as he said – medical entities did not report in the current cycle as they do on a daily basis.
– For these 954 announced deaths today, we have within 100 deaths from Good Friday, we have within 130 deaths from Holy Saturday and 130 deaths from Easter Sunday. So it is a large number of 954, but it also does not fully reflect the last day or actually the last two days, because most often the current reporting covers 24 to 48 hours and this is the standard – he explained.
– Today’s tragic result is, of course, due to the upward trend, which we must pay attention to, but also the reporting of deaths from the Christmas period, from Good Friday to Christmas Monday – Andrusiewicz repeated.
“We have a gentle descent from the top”
– With over 111,000 tests, i.e. with a very large scale of testing in Poland, we have less than 28,000 infections and this is the real picture of the third epidemic wave in Poland – said Andrusiewicz. – We have a gentle exit from the summit and we would like this trend to continue – he added. – It depends only on us how we behave in the coming days, because this downward trend has been going on for several days – he said
He also emphasized that the downward trend in the number of patients was followed by an upward trend in the number of hospital patients.
– Although today we have a slight decrease in the occupancy of hospital beds, because today the occupancy has increased to 170 beds, which as for the last days, taking into account that we had increases of 1100, 900 or 1000 additional hospitalizations, this is a small number, but in Polish hospitals, the peak of the third wave is just sweeping – it is very dangerous for the Polish health service, it is very dangerous for us as a society, so we have to take care of ourselves these days – said Andrusiewicz.
“The highlight is a slight decrease in the number of ambulance departures”
The spokesman also spoke about the situation in Silesia, where the limit of the occupancy of hospital beds is close, and in Małopolska, which has a problem with respirators.
– This is not the limit of efficiency yet, but of course all possibilities of relocation of patients are being prepared – he said and informed that a meeting with voivodes on this matter was underway. – The contribution of voivodes should be appreciated, who are constantly trying to support those voivodeships in which the situation is very difficult – he emphasized.
– This light, also flickering for now, is a slight decrease in the number of ambulance departures in recent days, because in the last 24 hours we have these departures at the level of 10.2 thousand, and we already had around 11.5 thousand, but we are still far from average, which occurred when we did not have the third wave of the epidemic, i.e. the level of 8-9 thousand departures – informed Andrusiewicz.
Spokesman on relocation of patients and vaccines
During the Thursday press conference, Andrusiewicz was asked about the relocation of patients from Silesia and whether, due to the difficult situation in Wielkopolska, also patients from this region would be relocated. – We talk about such decisions every day. The staff with voivodes is about to end – he said.
He emphasized that meetings of the staffs with the participation of voivodes, during which they inform about the situation in their regions, are held every day. – The neighboring voivodeships also provide the situation at home, so that we have the best data on the possible relocation of patients – Andrusiewicz pointed out.
He informed that today the relocation of patients from Silesia is taking place. At the same time, he added that its scale is smaller, because the number of covid beds in the region has increased in recent days. – So we are talking about relocating within 10 people a day – he added. – We had a difficult situation in terms of respirators in the Małopolskie Voivodeship and here relocation of patients is possible, even with the use of the Polish Medical Air Rescue – he continued.
He stressed that the situation is also difficult in Podkarpacie. – Lubelskie Voivodeship clears its possibilities to admit patients from Podkarpacie. So in each region we have defined paths of what to do with patients if suddenly these places run out – he emphasized.
He added that, apart from Silesia and a few cases in Podkarpacie, such decisions were not taken. “But we are close to making such decisions,” he stressed. – Let me say it again – the situation in Poland, despite the decrease in infections recorded by 20%, is still very difficult – he said.
Andrusiewicz was asked about solutions that would prevent the failure to use all COVID vaccines, even at the end of the day. – Everything will be regulated so that as few vaccines as possible in Poland will be utilized – he replied.
Because – as he added – “this is certainly happening all over the world, not only in Poland”. – It is not always possible to use every dose of the vaccine, but we do everything and we act in such a way that the doses of vaccines that are disposed of are as few as possible – he emphasized.
What about getting the kids back to school?
Andrusiewicz, when asked during a press conference about the decision on the return of children to school, stressed that “no decision on the return of children to school has been made”. – We would very much like (…) the children to return to kindergartens and nurseries first, and as a result, the students to schools – he added.
– We cannot exclude that it will happen in April, but we cannot responsibly say today, as the head of the Ministry of Health, that it will happen – he stressed. He stated that in the context of the decision on the return of children to schools, the ministry would monitor the results of coronavirus infections, but most of all it would pay attention to the number of hospitalized patients, the occupancy of hospital beds and ventilators.
Andrusiewicz admitted that “the situation in Polish hospitals is very difficult”.