Bandar Kuching MP urges health authorities to investigate claim on stretched Sibu Hospital due to Covid-19

Sulok Tawie
·2-min read
Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii said the Health Ministry and the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) should provide the necessary support to avoid hospital staff from overworked. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii said the Health Ministry and the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) should provide the necessary support to avoid hospital staff from overworked. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUCHING, April 23 — Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii today urged state health authorities to investigate allegations on Covid-19 situation in Sibu Hospital — where the capacity of the intensive care unit is at maximum.

He said the Health Ministry and the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) should provide the necessary support to avoid hospital staff from overworked.

He was responding to the allegations by a “Doctor” in a letter which was published in a news portal detailing the number of Covid-19 patients and how ICU beds are full and the hospital is forced to “step down” or transfer some severely sick Covid-19 patients with poor prognosis from critical care to other wards.

The doctor claimed that many of the frontliners are on the verge of burnout and are exhausted due to the surge of cases in the hospital.

“The government must properly investigate these allegations and address them properly and provide the required support in both supplies of basic medical equipment and manpower, and not punish these whistle blowers,” Yii said in a statement.

He said medical frontliners have been working for more than a year during this pandemic and should be given the necessary support and not threatened with disciplinary action for reporting the real situation.

“One thing that I find concerning is how official reporting by SDMC does not reflect what is said to be happening on the ground,” he said.

He added that based on the anonymous claims there are currently 27 Covid-19 patients in Sibu Hospital’s ICU, which contradicts SDMC’s official report yesterday that instead said there are only 12 active cases in ICU statewide, including five in Sibu.

Yii said according to the source there are 20 Covid-19 patients in the hospital who are on ventilator support, including 15 intubated.

He said SDMC’s report, however, claimed that the Sibu Hospital and its Covid-19 quarantine and treatment centres (PKRC) had 14 active intubated Covid-19 patients, out of 20 across Sarawak, as of yesterday.

“It is dishonest to be reporting something different to the public than what is really happening on the ground.

“In a public health crisis, honest and clear reporting is important so that the public fully understands the real situation on the ground and then they can provide the necessary support or even intervention if needed,” Yii said.

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