In the countries of Salzburg and Upper Austria, the worst affected by the fourth corona wave, the situation in the hospitals is becoming dramatic. In Upper Austria, Governor Thomas Stelzer (VP) therefore made an urgent vaccination appeal to the population.
“Anyone who still believes they can take the virus lightly and whoever still believes they can live the Corona regulations as a non-binding recommendation should be told: The virus is unpredictable. Nobody knows where it will strike next.” , Stelzer appealed to “common sense and personal responsibility in this country”. “In everything that is currently dividing the country, there is one common goal: We want freedom for all of us.” He thanked the “majority of compatriots who protect themselves and others with the corona vaccination,” said Stelzer. At the same time, all those who have not yet been vaccinated should make a contribution: by reducing their social contacts and complying with the exit restrictions.
In a hastily called press conference in Salzburg, Governor Wilfried Haslauer (VP) reacted to the fact that the Salzburg State Clinics (SALK) had sent an “overload report” to state politicians. In Salzburg, the option for the “third stitch” will be brought forward to four months after the second vaccination. The vaccination rate is to be increased in general, one wants to “avoid a lockdown as long as it is possible”.
The SALK have now nominated a six-man triage team, said SALK spokesman Wolfgang Frweger on Tuesday morning. This team would then have to decide which patients can still be treated in intensive care. You are not in this situation yet, but you are preparing for it.
Patients can still be adequately cared for in Upper Austria, say Tilman Knigswieser, medical director of the Salzkammergut Clinic and the Upper Austrian crisis team, and Franz Harnoncourt, managing director of the above-mentioned health holding, but one is observing the development “with great concern”. This also applies to triage. If things continue like this, it would be “incorrect to rule that out in the future,” said Harnoncourt. 200 operations have already had to be postponed in the Salzkammergut Clinic. Of 127 Upper Austrian intensive care beds reserved for Covid patients, 97 were already occupied as of Tuesday.
“On the border”
“After the previous waves of pandemics, the hospital staff are so stressed that the seriousness of the situation cannot simply be judged by numbers and beds,” says the Deputy Governor of Health Christine Haberlander (VP). Doctors and nursing staff are “absolutely at the limit”, it is understandable that they meanwhile lack any understanding for unvaccinated people.
Walter Hasibeder, President of the Society for Anesthesiology, Resuscitation and Intensive Care Medicine (GARI), described the situation in the intensive care units as “very, very tense” and “particularly bad”. He called for a “general lockdown for a certain period of time” for the high incidence federal states of Upper Austria and Salzburg.