Doctor: Medical workers getting depressed at having to reject patients


A RESPIRATORY disease specialist today (July 9) revealed in a Facebook post that the number of frontline healthcare workers getting depressed is increasing as they now have to select coronavirus patients with a better chance of survival and reject the others through lack of accomodation in their hospital, said.

Dr. Nittha Eua-areemit or Dr. Nat, based at Ekachai Hospital, said many hospitals have now stopped examining Covid patients despite their symptoms and risk history through lack of beds.

Others have imposed a criteria to choose patients with better survival chances because of a lack of ventilators.

Some patients waited in the emergency room till their symptoms worsened and they died there, she added.

The situation has led to an increasing number of healthcare workers becoming depressed because it is not at all fun being at the frontline and having to choose some patients for treatment and abandoning others,  Dr. Nittha said, adding that right now there is not enough of anything at all.

She also drew attention to a rule whereby if a patient gets a positive result in a laboratory test, that patient has to be admitted to the hospital within 24 hours.

However a shortage of beds led to these labs, which still have the capacity to test more people, not doing so because those testing positive cannot be admitted as there is no room.

She posted a lung X-ray of a patient to underscore this point. This person had been sick for nine days but could not be tested and finally reached this hospital after being rejected by a few others.

“I want the authorities to urgently fix this problem. Test lots of people and isolate them quickly. Arrange enough yellow and orange beds to reduce red cases as much as possible.

 “Let me tell you, these days labs in Bangkok are not even testing half of their capacity because of this stupid rule that they have to be admitted within 24 hours.

“I have been complaining since Samut Sakhon season but it’s still the same,” she said.


Top: A healthcare worker at a hospital. Thai headline says, “Have to abandon patients.” Photo:

Home Page: Two medical workers carrying a pill. Photo: Marco Verch, professional photographer (CC BY 2.0)

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