Monday, October 25, 2021, 09:27 (GMT+7)
Military Hospital 175 performs the task of COVID-19 prevention and control

With their conscience, responsibility, and resolve, the Military Hospital 175’s “white blouse soldiers” have surmounted all difficulties and hardships to serve and treat COVID-19 patients, thereby making significant contributions to the victory of Ho Chi Minh City and other Southern provinces over the COVID-19 pandemic.

As the Military’s highest-level general hospital in the South, over the years, with the support from the Government, the Central Military Commission, and the Ministry of National Defence, the Military Hospital 175 has received massive investments in its facilities and human resources, thus gradually developing itself into a versatile medical complex. Being stationed in the city of Ho Chi Minh, in addition to advantages for its comprehensive development, the Hospital is confronted with a lot of difficulties. Its key cadres, particularly its qualified, experienced doctors are about to reach retirement age without the complemented human resources to meet its development requirements. Most of its divisions and departments perform their task in different places due to long-term construction projects. Under the motto of “medical expertise, pure morality, unity, democracy, discipline,” the Hospital’s Party Committee and Board of Directors have drastically, synchronously taken measures to overcome difficulties, foster international integration, renewal, and creativity, and build a typically pure, strong Party Organisation and a comprehensively strong Hospital capable of fulfilling its assigned task. Currently, the Hospital is tasked with maintaining combat readiness, receiving, examining, and treating patients, training the Level-2 Field Hospital No.3 for the United Nations peacekeeping operations, providing medical support for the island district of Truong Sa, the DK1 Platform, and islands in the South, and performing many contingency missions.

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the Hospital has adopted measures of pandemic prevention and control drastically, synchronously, while actively advised the Central Military Commission (CMC), the Ministry of National Defence (MND), and localities to develop plans and projects to keep the pandemic under control. Particularly during the 4th wave of COVID-19 in the city of Ho Chi Minh and other Southern provinces, under the direction of the Government, the CMC, and the MND, the Hospital has established the Centre for treating moderate and severe COVID-19 cases. To well perform this task, first of all, the Hospital’s Party Committee and Board of Directors have enhanced the work of propagation and education to render all cadres, doctors, nurses, and employees fully aware of the impacts and risks of SARS-CoV-2 as well as pandemic prevention and control. Grasping the Appeals by the Chief of the Party and the State President, telegrams, documents, directives, and plans by the Government, the CMC, the MND, the Municipal People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh, and competent offices on COVID-19 prevention and control, the Hospital’s Party Committee has issued a specialised resolution on this work, while the Board of Directors has developed responsive plans and scenarios properly. At the same time, party committees and commands of divisions and departments have been required to concretise that resolution into their own resolutions and action plans so as to achieve a consensus within themselves under the spirit of “fighting the pandemic like fighting enemies” and build up the resolve to win against COVID-19. Key cadres at all levels have promoted their role in inspecting and encouraging medical staff members in charge of receiving, examining, and treating COVID-19 patients at the Hospital and the field hospitals. The work of propagation and education has been well carried out to render medical staff members and patients and their relatives fully aware of the danger of SARS-CoV-2, especially the Delta variant as well as regulations and measures for detecting and preventing the pandemic effectively, opportunely. Doing so has enabled the Hospital to make a huge positive change in its doctors, nurses, and employees’ awareness and increase their vigilance during the process of treating COVID-19 patients.

The Hospital’s Party Committee and Board of Directors have exercised their leadership and direction over the rapid establishment of the COVID-19 treatment centre - a stronghold against the pandemic. To opportunely satisfy the requirements set by this important, urgent task, the Hospital has taken advantage of its existing facilities, while effectively exploiting funding and equipment allocated by higher echelons and the assistance from offices, units, and localities to found the centre for treating moderate and severe SARS-CoV-2 cases. It has proactively prepared and reserved medical equipment, materials, and means for treatment and response to an enormous increase in the number of COVID-19 patients. Besides, it has closely directed competent agencies to drastically adopt measures to prevent cross-infections of COVID-19 amongst cadres, employees, and soldiers. Acquiring and applying lessons on COVID-19 prevention and control from other countries all over the world, under the guidance of higher echelons, the Hospital has organised refresher courses for its medical staff members on the uniformed procedure of reception and treatment. Due attention has been paid to establishing a front-line clinic to classify patients, receive patients’ medical declarations, and test all citizens coming to the Hospital. Since early May 2021, the Hospital has performed rapid antigen tests for more than 60,000 people coming to the Hospital for medical examination and treatment and business. Those who had tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 were temporarily quarantined, classified according to disease degrees, and transferred to different hospitals for treatment. Cadres and employees of the Hospital have all been closely managed via their medical declarations and regular medical screening to create a safe, healthy environment so that they would keep their mind on their work.

Employing the technique of ECMO for 2 patients on the same machine

In order to improve the effectiveness of treating SARS-CoV-2 patients, the Hospital has mobilised all available resources to construct and upgrade the centre for treating moderate and severe COVID-19 patients in a highly professional manner. With its initial 200-bed extension at the request of the MND and Ho Chi Minh City’s Department of Health, the Hospital quickly exploited its human and material resources to drastically complete the construction of the centre and receive the first COVID-19 patient on July 19th, 2021. From the efficiency of the centre and in response to a significant increase in the number of moderate and severe COVID-19 cases, the centre’s capability has been increased from 200 beds to 350 beds on August 11th, 2021 and to 500 beds currently. To well perform this urgent task, the Hospital has taken the centre’s board of directors as the core force in charge of upgrading facilities and equipment promptly. Consideration has been given to opportunely employing modern resuscitation techniques, such HFNC therapy, high-function ventilation, continuous hemofiltration, and ECMO. Doctors of the centre’s intensive care unit have creatively used the technique of ECMO for 2 patients on the same machine due to a dearth of this type of equipment for severe cases, thereby making contributions to saving many patients’ lives. To maintain the highly professional and effective operation of the centre, the Hospital has divided the center into different COVID-19 treatment storeys according to the disease degrees. It has proactively deployed staff members to work in shifts and teams in accordance with the task requirements. The Hospital’s Party Committee and Board of Directors have demanded to bring into play the role of directors of the centre, leaders of departments, and particularly doctors, nurses, and employees in monitoring and treating patients. Great value has been attached to strictly following the COVID-19 treatment regimen and closely tracking patients’ daily developments as the basis for proper therapies. The centre has regularly screened and classified its patients to transfer them to its treatment storeys, while organising tests and accurately evaluating the recovery of its patients in order to prevent community infections, avoid overcrowding at the Hospital, and spare the “golden opportunity” for other patients. Since its inception, the centre has received and treated thousands of moderate and severe COVID-19 cases, making significant contributions to the fight against the pandemic in the city of Ho Chi Minh and Southern provinces.

Furthermore, the Hospital has actively provided support for other localities in COVID-19 prevention and control. Its teams and groups have been deployed for SARS-CoV-2 vaccination and testing in the areas severely hit by the pandemic. Right in early July 2021, under the direction of the MND and the Municipal People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh, the Hospital has selected and sent 150 healthy, experienced doctors, nurses, and medical technicians to the city’s field hospital No.7. It has also deployed more than 500 staff members for testing within the high-risk areas, such as Go Vap, Tan Phu, Binh Tan, and Hoc Mon districts with over 65,000 samples (for both RT-PCR and rapid antigen testing), opportunely detected many positive cases, organised 20 vaccination teams with more than 85,000 doses in the district No.7, the district of Go Vap, the city of Thu Duc, and the provinces of Long An and Binh Duong, and vaccinated military staff members and Japanese citizens in the areas with a total of nearly 12,000 doses and the absolute safety. In the peak period, the Hospital has tested over 50,000 RT-PCR samples and quarantined hundreds of SARS-CoV-2 cases.

With those remarkable achievements in the fight against COVID-19, the MND has recommended the State President to present the Military Hospital 175 with the Third-Class Labour Order as an important prerequisite for the Hospital to continue making itself typically comprehensively strong to deserve to be a stronghold against COVID-19 in the city of Ho Chi Minh and Southern provinces.

Sr. Col., Dr. TRAN QUOC VIET, Secretary of the Hospital’s Party Committee

Deputy Director of the Hospital

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