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New covid ward is not at hospital

07.12.2021 - 12:59
Mynd: Bragi Valgeirsson / RÚV
A dedicated new covid ward will today open at Reykjavík’s Eir nursing home, intended for elderly covid patients who are recovering but who still need medical care. The new ward will reduce pressure on Landspítali national university hospital, it is hoped.
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"We foresee it as being maybe for people who live in nursing homes with shared accommodation, people who maybe live at home but use day services for people with dementia, people who are at home and have a sick spouse who can maybe not be in the same home as somebody who has a covid infection. We see this as a solution,” says Þórdís Hulda Tómasdóttir, head of nursing at Eir. 

The ward has ten beds and is not the first of its type: a covid ward outside of hospital was operated under a different sort of agreement earlier in the pandemic. This time, it is a direct contract between Eir and the national health insurance fund and Þórdís Hulda says there is great need for facilities such as this. 

“This is a solution that can lighten the load on Landspítali, because there are even people admitted to Landspítali with few or no symptoms but who cannot be in a quarantine hotel, or cannot be at home. Those people can come to us,” she says. 

There are currently 24 covid patients in hospital, and some will be moved to Eir right away. They will be the patients who have finished treatment and are in stable condition, but who cannot go home. They will finish their period of isolation on the new ward, rather than in hospital. 

The contract lasts three months but can be extended depending on the status of the pandemic. 

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