The Centro Nacional de Rehabilitación (Cenare), located in La Uruca, refitted to become a hospital exclusively for covid-19 patients is ready. And in record time.
President Carlos Alvarado, during the Tuesday afternoon covid-19 briefing, gave the television audience a tour of new medical center, that will now be called Centro Especializado de Atención de Pacientes con COVID-19 (CEACO) – Specialized Patient Care Center with COVID-19 – that was readied in a record 11 days.
Mario Ruiz, medical manager of the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social (CCSS), along with CCSS president Roman Macaya, accompanied Alvarado, explaining some of the changes and the ‘inter-institutional effort” that went into making the 88-bed hospital possible in this time of crisis.
For now, the CEACO will operate at half capacity.
According to Ruiz, the other 44 beds for covid-19 patients who require hospitalization in intermediate care will be enabled by the end of the week.
The hospital is equipped with monitors, telemedicine screens that allow medical staff to attend to patients with the minimum risk of contagion, and respirators for assisted breathing, as well as X-ray equipment that allows images to be sent for analysis remotely to specialists.
In total, the hospital has 48 lung ventilators, two video laryngoscopes, portable X-ray machines, 88 secretion aspirators, 88 transport carts, 22 infrared non-contact thermometers, plasma autoclave equipment for the sterilization of medical equipment, and equipment for patient mobilization, among others.
In addition, capsules to transport patients from anywhere in the country, in a fully contained environment was detailed Macaya, who said he hopes to never have to see one from the inside.
The bright orange capsules allow patients to be transported safely without fear of infecting the medical staff and the general public while in transit.
“This facility is already in operation today, it has been put into operation,” said Alvarado.
For his part, the Minister of Health, Dr. Daniel Salas, informed that the number of confirmed for covid-19 is now 347, 17 more than the day before.
Of the confirmed, 167 are women and 180 women, of which 320 are Costa Ricans and 27 foreigners. Four people have so far recovered and the deaths remain at 2.
Salas also confirmed that legislators are expected to pass on Wednesday morning the two bills presented Monday by the Executive Branch, setting out sanctions for people who violate the night vehicular restrictions and the mandatory quarantine as ordered by Health authorities.
With respect to the Health order violation, the bill calls for a fine from one to 5 base salaries, currently from ¢450,000 to ¢2,200,000 colones and possible criminal charges.
The fines for offending drivers will be ¢107,000 colones for each violation. A number of legislators requested an amendment to the bill, to authorize Transito (traffic) officials to also confiscate the vehicle and/or license plate and record points on the driver’s license of the offending driver.