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Almost Half of Those Needing Ventilator Treatment in Hungary Die

Hungary Today 2020.11.04.

Fatality rates among those on ventilators are high in Hungary, almost 50%, higher than in the first wave of the pandemic, a chief infectologsit said. Ventilator treatment is the last step in trying to save the life of a patient in serious condition, and something that infectologists try to avoid.

According to the chief infectologist of the South Pest Central Hospital, at the moment 40-45% of those on ventilators in their hospital eventually succumb to the infection. As a consequence, the situation is worse now than during the first wave, when the rate stood at around 30%, János Szlávik claimed.

He also explained that they only put the most severe cases on ventilators, as patients on ventilators are kept in induced comas, and the number of complications also increases.

Szlávik also claimed that fatality rates among those cared for in inpatient care stands at 5-10%. According to him, previously, the majority of patients tended to get infected at family or mass events, something that no longer can be stated, as now anybody can get the infection anywhere.

Earlier, another infectologist placed this fatality rate even higher. According to Erzsébet Pusztai, a former politician of conservative MDF and conservative-liberal MDNP, 60% of those needing respirators will never recover. That’s why, she added, respirators are generally avoided, as they only help in scarce cases.

Previously, the chief medical officer claimed that 10% of those needing hospital treatment eventually end up on ventilators. In reference to professional research, Cecília Müller also confirmed that survival chances are the better the later a patient has to be put on ventilator.

Taking a look at the last seven days, daily average deaths stood between 43 and 90, and show an increasing overall tendency, similarly to the daily number of those on ventilator, that grew from 233 (October 28) to 355 (November 4).

Anyhow, while Hungary’s hospital capacity’s sufficiency is already doubted, the number of available ventilators should be enough for long. After the government’s buying campaign, there are now more than 16 thousand of the pricey machines on stock. So much, that the Foreign Ministry already began to try to sell those “above the strategic stock.”

featured image illustration via Károly Árvai/MTI/kormany.hu