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 The exclusive unit for covid patients has 16 beds on the fourth floor.
- Social Security courtesy photo and A.M. Costa Rica wire services illustrative photo -

Published Thursday, September 17, 2020

Alajuela hospital opens a new
unit for covid-19 patients

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The San Rafael hospital, in Alajuela Province, announced the establishment of a new unit to treat covid-19 patients.

According to Karen Rodríguez-Segura, general director of the hospital, the exclusive unit for covid patients has 16 beds on the fourth floor. It could be extended to more beds, depending on the increase in cases.

The medical team in charge of the new unit is from the general medicine area with support from the specialist of other services. The reorganization of the medical professionals will not affect the regular medical services that continue to be provided normally to patients treated for other pathologies.

Since the beginning of the emergency due to the pandemic, the San Rafael hospital has treated covid-19 patients, however, this new unit responds to the expansion strategy of more units for the care of infected patients that Social Security is developing.

The hospital's preparation to enable the covid-19 patient unit began months ago with the acquisition of medical equipment, reorganization of services, and professional training, according to Social Security.

The provision of more units for the care of patients infected with covid-19 is a priority of the health authorities due to the declaration of health emergencies caused by the rapid increase in cases and deaths reported on a daily basis.

As of Wednesday, the Ministry of Health reported the following on the statistics of the virus in the country:

1,378 new covid-19 cases, bringing the total to 37,115 active cases. The ages of patients infected range from a three-month-old baby to a 100-year-old person.

11,938 foreign-born people have been infected with a total of 59,516 cases since March, approximately 20% of the total cases.

• 634 patients are being treated in public hospitals, where 253 patients are in ICU’s in delicate health conditions (ages range from 23 to a 91-year-old person). And 381 patients are in recovery rooms. The majority of the rest of the infected patients are quarantined in their homes.

• 21,752 coronavirus patients have fully recovered, which is a 36.6% recovery rate of the total cases since March.

• 116,014 people have been ruled out.

• 190,570 medical covid-19 tests have been made.

649 deaths of people infected with covid-19, approximately 1.1% death rate of the total cases since March. Of these 246 were women and 403 men. The ages range from 19 to a 100-year-old person.

As of Aug. 31, authorities confirmed the death of 31 foreign-born patients. The youngest and most recent victim was a 19-year-old woman who lived in Guanacaste Province. Before then, on July 30, the ministry announced they would not provide updated information on foreign-born people who died from covid-19 in the country, which at the time authorities reported 30 had died from the virus since March.

Readers can see the updated number of total patients in each district at the National Distance Education University on its Covid-19 Map.

As of Wednesday night, the pandemic has killed 939,175 patients worldwide, according to recent statistics reported by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University.

Where should health authorities add more units for covid-19 treatment?
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