Emergency Responses to COVID-19 Outbreak: Experiences and Lessons from a General Hospital in Nanjing, China
40 Pages Posted: 17 Mar 2020More...
Background: Until now, the novel coronavirus 2019 (SARS-CoV-2) has caused wide dissemination in China and other 72 countries, affecting more than 90,000 peoples. Global health systems are facing the unprecedented challenges. Here we shared the experiences and lessons in emergency responses and management from our hospital, a government-assigned regional anti-COVID-19 general hospital in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China.
Methods: All measures were designed and taken based on three periodic strategies with different emphases, in response to the epidemic progress. Beginning on January 6, 2020, an emergency leadership committee with subsidiary companion teams were established in Phase Ⅰ. Proactive preparation like infrastructure modifications and personnel training were conducted. In Phase Ⅱ, no efforts were spared on special arrangements for outpatients, surgeries, and online medical services to cut the visitors density. With continuous drop of newly confirmed cases since mid-February, regular hospital operation recovered gradually (Phase Ⅲ). COVID-19 screening flow was tailored in each phase. Questionnaires for staffs’ mental status and satisfaction were also surveyed.
Findings: Since January 16, three patients were diagnosed with SARS-CoV-2 infection in our hospital. No hospital employees were infected with COVID-19. There was no case of hospital-acquired COVID-19 infection for those who received medical care in the setting of both outpatient and inpatient. During the epidemics, 6·46% staffs suffered depression, 9·87% had anxiety, and 98% were satisfied with the hospital infection control work. Shortages in staffs and medical consumables, and limitation in space were the obstacles we encountered.
Interpretation: As the outbreak was rapid and sudden, and great uncertainties in COVID-19 still remain, we faced substantial challenges and difficulties. As the cost of in-hospital transmission is unbearable, our experiences and lessons suggested that prompt actions should be taken immediately to decrease or eliminate potential in-hospital transmission. Experience shared herein may be useful for those facilities who are and who may engage in COVID-19.
Funding Statement: None.
Declaration of Interests: The authors declare no competing interests.
Keywords: COVID-19; Hospital Management; Infection Prevention and Control; Emergency Responses
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