New health minister visits Myongji Hospital
Myongji Hospital Chairman Lee Wang-jun (left) explains the hospital’s Covid-19 treatment facilities to new Minister of Health and Welfare Minister Kwon Deok-chul (in yellow uniform) who visited the hospital, north of Seoul, on Sunday. At Kwon’s left is Rep. Shin Hyun-young, and at his right is Kim Sae-chul, director-general of the hospital.
Myongji Hospital said that new Health and Welfare Minister Kwon Deok-chul visited the hospital on Sunday to take a tour of its Covid-19 critical patient treatment ward and encourage the medical staff.
The hospital has been serving as a Covid-19 base hospital and has treated 110 critically ill patients at nine negative pressure isolation beds. Recently, the hospital voluntarily expanded 10 additional treatment beds for severely ill patients.
Following the guidance of Myongji Hospital Chairman Lee Wang-joon, Kwon, accompanied other ministry officials, visited treatment and examination facilities, such as screening clinics, respiratory fever clinics, and negative pressure isolation wards for critically ill Covid-19 patients, appreciating the efforts of the hospital's medical workers.
"I am deeply grateful that a private hospital taking the lead in cooperating to the treatment of critically ill Covid-19 patients," Kwon said. "I believe we will be able to overcome Covid-19 soon with the dedication of medical professionals who have endured various difficulties, and the hospital’s managers who made a difficult decision to participate in providing the beds for the critically ill Covid-19 patients."
Kwon said that he was impressed by the hospital's dual-track healthcare system, which designated one building to operate it as a dedicated area for Covid-19 while providing medical treatment for patients unrelated to the Covid-19 virus without disruption.
Rep. Shin Hyun-young of the ruling Democratic Party, who had served as a doctor at the hospital, also visited the hospital alongside Minister Kwon.
"Although I have been away from the medical field for a while, I have never forgotten the hard work of the medical workers," Shin said. "As a Korean citizen, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Myongji Hospital's Covid-19 response system and acute patient care system that is being upgraded day by day."
In response, Myongji Hospital Chairman Lee Wang-jun said, "To actively cope with the third viral wave, we voluntarily expanded the number of beds exclusively for treating severely ill patients."
However, the hospital is experiencing difficulties due to the lack of medical workers with intensive care treatment experience, he added.
Lee requested the government's help to address difficulties on medical sites, such as supporting nurses, providing adequate compensation for medical staff exposed to the risk of infection and suffering from heavy labor, and introducing a virtual care system for life treatment facilities.
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