JOHOR BARU: A request has been made to the Malaysian Armed Forces (MAF) to provide additional Covid-19 medical support at Hospital Sultanah Aminah (HSA), in view of the state’s stretched healthcare system, says a state exco member.
Johor Health and Environment Committee chairman R. Vidyananthan said MAF has agreed to set up a field hospital in front of the hospital's main building here and is expected to begin operations on June 17.
“The MAF will be assembling their assets and equipment by Wednesday (June 9) to provide 60 hospital beds and four intensive care unit (ICU) beds in stages.
“They were called in to provide assistance because there was an increase of some 30% of Covid-19 patients at government hospitals in Johor Baru since the start of Hari Raya.
“This has contributed to the increase in bed occupancy for Covid-19 patients to more than 95%, including the ICU wards.
“The armed forces will deploy three officers and 30 paramedics, in addition to the HSA medical staff at the field hospital, ” he said in a statement on Tuesday (June 8).
As of Sunday (June 6), 1,247 Covid-19 patients were being treated in the state’s government hospitals. They comprised 105 patients in ICU wards, where 82 of them were on ventilators.
He added that there were 24 patients receiving treatment for Covid-19 at several private hospitals here, where two were placed on ventilators.
Vidyananthan said the HSA field hospital’s length of operation depends on the Covid-19 situation in the state, especially in Johor Baru and the surrounding districts.
Besides MAF and the Health Ministry, the field hospital also involves the National Disaster Management Agency (Nadma) and Johor government through its disaster management committee, he added.