Suriname faces full ICU capacity with few healthcare workers to help expand

PARAMARIBO - The capacity of intensive care units in Suriname have been stretched to their limit due to the current wave of the coronavirus pandemic, NOS reported. According to the health ministry there, 26 intensive care beds are currently occupied, out of 27 available in total.

Acute care physician and the country’s medical coordinator for the pandemic, Navin Ramdhani, said scaling up any further is difficult due to the shortage of medical workers. He explained that adding 20 extra beds would require 60 nurses, which is currently not possible.

Over 10,000 coronavirus infections have been recorded in the country since the start of the pandemic, with the third wave beginning on about April 1. During the month of April, about 1,170 infections were uncovered in the country of around 580,000.

Roughly 62 infections have been found there on each of the past seven days. At a press conference, Ramdhani urged residents to comply with the coronavirus measures.

He also called upon the people there to get vaccinated. About 40,000 vaccines have been administered in the country so far, accounting for less than 10% of people eligible for a jab. 

Most of the vaccines in Suriname have been delivered as part of the international COVAX program, which aims to provide equal access to COVID-19 vaccines for countries regardless of wealth. In addition, Suriname also asked the Netherlands and the United States to assist by supplying more vaccine doses. 

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