Hospitals in Hungary have been ordered to free up half of their beds by April 19 in preparation for a massive increase in novel coronavirus infections.
The aim is to ensure that all major hospitals have enough beds to treat up to hundreds of patients at a time once the outbreak reaches the phase of mass infections. By April 19, hospitals have to free up 50 percent of their beds, enough for 32,900 patients. By the next phase, hospitals will have to have 39,500 beds ready for COVID-19 patients, or 60 percent of their bed capacity.
The aim of the regulation is to avoid situations seen in other countries where sudden spikes in coronavirus cases left hospitals without enough beds to treat patients.
Hospitals within the same county have been given permission to transfer patients amongst themselves. The statement said the instruction to free up beds did not mean that all non-COVID-19 patients would be discharged. Patients are released based on a decision by their doctors as well as on the basis of health protocols.
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