Wednesday, December 8

El Zendal prepares its plan for after the Covid


MADRID

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Ten months after its start-up, after construction in record time, the Isabel Zendal Hospital has treated 8,179 patients. It has gone through a fierce campaign against and through sabotage, and has continued to become the center that brought together the largest number of people admitted by Covid-19. Now that the pandemic seems like begins to remit, the hospital, with 118 beds occupied yesterday –17 in the intermediate respiratory care units, 25 in the ICU and 10 in rehabilitation– prepair your plan for the future now.

A hundred patients, their current occupation, is barely 10 percent of the capacity that Zendal has, which reaches 1,008 hospitalizations. The improvement in epidemiological data has resulted in less pressure on care, and this leads to the question from many areas: What will happen to Zendal when the pandemic ends?

Versatility

Those responsible for the Madrid Ministry of Health assure that the fall in income will not mean leaving the Zendal Hospital with dead spaces, or turned into a white elephant. Anticipate that they are already working on the plan for the future activities of the center, which is also offered for any other pandemic or health emergency in the future.

Patients taking the air in the Zendal
Patients taking the air in the Zendal – IGNACIO GIL

In fact, sources from the center recall, the three pavilions of the Isabel Zendal Emergency Hospital have been used continuously. At one point, when the number of admissions went down, the space dedicated to mass vaccination center was further extended. And when the fifth wave tightened and the number of patients to be admitted increased, “in 24 hours a part of the area occupied by the vaccine device was enabled again as a hospital,” they point out, insisting on the versatility and flexibility of this facility for adapt to the circumstances at all times.

The hospital center will have a stable workforce of more than 500 professionals spread over several shifts

More than 8,000 people who have been cured of Covid have not only passed through the Hospital Nurse Isabel Zendal; 1.6 million people have also been vaccinated since this activity began, on February 23.

The Emergency Hospital, with the end of the pandemic, will not be closed or unused, they explain in the Ministry of Health. At this time, as they have explained to ABC, they finalize the plan of activities that they will carry out. And that includes providing it with something that it never had until now: a stable workforce of more than 500 professionals – spread over several work shifts – that will allow it to remain as a reference hospital for Covid-19.

Transfers

The employees, who in their day they arrived at this center transferred from other hospitalss –which generated many union criticisms–, they now have a new open process ahead of them to move back to their hospitals of origin, or to remain in the Zendal voluntarily if that is what they want. The criteria that will be applied, they assure in the Ministry of Health, will be those of arrival seniority. The unions return to the charge, this time because they denounce that this return to their centers of origin has been announced with little notice, and accuse Health of “improvising”.

Since this week, Javier Marco, its medical director, is in charge of the hospital, after its previous director has been appointed, Fernando Prados, as general director of Hospitals and Health Infrastructures. Changes that will not alter the operation of the hospital, the only one of its kind, and of which President Díaz Ayuso boasts in all her public interventions on the pandemic.

Regional Laboratory

The Hospital Isabel Zendal will also maintain the Regional Laboratory, which has been moved there, unifying in this center different facilities distributed throughout different parts of the Community. And the warehouse, which centralizes sanitary material for the Madrid network.

Likewise, the SUMMA 112 Coordination Center will be integrated into this hospital. And it is likely that it will also remain as a permanent vaccination center, for those Madrid who lack immunization against Covid-19.

But, in addition, the Post-Covid Comprehensive Rehabilitation Unit, for patients who, after overcoming the critical phase of the disease, have serious sequelae and require multidisciplinary care to improve their health and regain their quality of life. It cares not only for patients from Zendal, but also for those who have come from other hospitals in the Community’s public network.

Specialists

In these ten months of operation, and beyond the media noise around its operation, the Zendal has been the object of the attention of the national and international press, and the scene of an international congress on Covid and the First Meeting of healthcare alternatives in the Covid-19 pandemic, a conference where doctors from different hospitals participated.

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