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Treatment unit being established to treat long COVID ailments

Last Updated on Thursday, 2 September 2021, 20:33 by Denis Chabrol

Dr. Frank Anthony

Health Minister Dr Frank Anthony on Thursday announced that the first of several facilities was being established at the Georgetown Public Hospital to treat persons who have recovered from the COVID-19 virus but are suffering from long-term ailments caused by the infection.

Speaking during the Thursday edition of his COVID update, he said the unit would provide care for long COVID patients rather than specialising on a particular ailment.

“What we are seeing with COVID, it can affect any one of the organs in the body or sometimes several organs of the body simultaneously and, therefore, you need this multidisciplinary team to assist in the management of some of these patients,” he said.

The Health Minister said the long COVID unit at the Georgetown Public Hospital would be replicated at other hospitals “depending on the patient load that we would see.”

Consultations, he said, have already started with doctors to set up the unit.

Already, the Health Minister said steps have been taken to increase the number of beds at existing hospitals to cater for a rising surge in COVID-19 cases due to the possible presence of the more transmissible Delta strain in Guyana.

Antigua and Barbuda, Trinidad and Tobago, and Jamaica have been reporting an overload of hospitals in recent days with COVID-19 cases.

Latest available statistics from the Health Ministry show that of the 1,987 active cases, 33 of them are receiving intensive care, 122 others are in open COVID ward and 1,832 have been told to isolate themselves at home.

The ministry says there are 1,987 active cases; 33 of those are serious cases in the Covid ICU, 122 others hospitalised in medical facilities and 1,832 told to isolate themselves at home.

Eight persons have died within the past 36 hours, taking Guyana’s death toll to 632.

The Health Ministry said that to date  316,973 persons or 62 percent of adults with a first dose COVID vaccine and 165,401 adults or 32 percent are fully vaccinated. Dr. Anthony has appealed to Guyanese to get fully vaccinated as there is a gap between the one-dose and two-dose takers.

Dating back to last week when the first child was inoculated with a PfizerBioNtech vaccine, up to Thursday 4,362 children between the ages of 12 to 18 have taken their first dose.