’Bittersweet’ anniversary for Covid field hospital

The Brackengate Hospital of Hope has saved more than 3000 lives since it opened.

The Brackengate Hospital of Hope has saved 3 390 patients since it opened last year, according to the hospital’s chief executive Maria Brink.

The 366-bed field hospital in Brackenfell South marked its one-year anniversary on Monday July 19.

“Looking back 18 months ago, none of us would have believed what lay ahead of us. No one could have foreseen a disease that would bring humanity worldwide to a collective standstill. That would cost us so many lives,” Ms Brink said in a statement.

“Even if it was a friend of a friend, an extended family member, someone who worked in your facility, we can sadly all say that we knew someone who died of Covid-19.”

A typical day at the facility started with health-care workers carefully donning masks and other protective gear before entering the high-risk wards, she said.

In all, the hospital had logged 4 346 admissions and referred 533 patients to tertiary institutions for further care. The hospital had also recorded 423 deaths. “The team has also lost three nursing staff members to the pandemic,” Ms Brink said.

The first-anniversary milestone was a “bittersweet moment”, she said.