UKC Ljubljana struggling to provide enough beds and staff

Ljubljana – Prime Minister Janez Janša visited UKC Ljubljana today, meeting director Janez Poklukar. The latter said in a statement after the meeting that the hospital was investing massive efforts in providing beds, but the biggest problem was lack of staff.

“For 300 Covid-19 patients and another 60 in intensive care, we need 500 nurses and between 75 and 100 doctors. We need to reorganise other programmes to create internal reserves to tend to Covid-19 patients,” Poklukar said.

Currently, there are 150 Covid-19 patients at UKC Ljubljana, of them 28 are in intensive care. They are located at five different locations: the infectious diseases clinic, the orthopaedic clinic, the old and the new paediatric clinic and the Peter Držaj hospital.

Poklukar also said that an agreement would be made with spa operators in the coming days to take in some of the patients. Talks are taking place at the national level, said Poklukar, who believes that patients who are no longer infectious could be sent to spas.

Poklukar today briefed Janša about the hospital’s efforts, with the prime minister commending the hospital staff for their work during the pandemic.

The prime minister said in a tweet that more than 1,700 square metres of space had been left undeveloped at the hospital for over a decade, saying that quick adaptation works could provide a large number of beds for Covid-19 patients.

UKC Ljubljana explained for the STA that these were premises of a planned diagnostic and therapeutic service complex, which was an extension to the main hospital building.

The premises are in the development phase and the original plan was for them to house intensive therapy and operating theatres, the hospital said, adding that it would now try to turn it into a makeshift Covid-19 ward with around 100 beds.