Covid clinic opens

AN additional coronavirus (Covid-19) treatment facility has been added to step up efforts to ensure the timely care of infected people.

The new clinic at the Bahrain International Exhibition and Convention Centre (BIECC) will follow up on existing Covid-19 cases in accordance with recently updated protocols, said the Health Ministry yesterday.

“The clinic will also continue with regular examinations and vaccination,” it added in a statement.

The 14,000sqm exhibition centre, which can accommodate up to 30,000 visitors each day and with parking space for 800 vehicles, was converted into a multi-purpose Covid-19 facility in March last year.

It was initially used for screening, testing and treatment but was subsequently used for vaccinations too.

The centre was also used in Bahrain’s phase three trials of the Chinese vaccine Sinopharm in August last year.


Since then a number of other Covid-19 facilities have been set up, including converting parts of the largest public hospital, Salmaniya Medical Complex (SMC), into treatment units.

A field unit was set up in Sitra, a 130-bed intensive care unit was established at the BDF Hospital with an additional 500 beds dedicated to critical care distributed across the country, a facility in A’ali and the International Hospital Bahrain on Budaiya Highway.

The Hereditary Blood Disorder Centre, helipad and Sehati unit at SMC were among other facilities that were converted into treatment units, alongside the Jidhafs hospital and the Muharraq geriatric centre.

Meanwhile, the ministry also addressed a concern raised by a Bahraini actress who claimed on social media that she was not provided with proper care when she reached out for help.

Wafaa Makiib, in an audio clip on her Instagram account on Saturday, said that she was taken in a bus along with six others, when she called 999 for an ambulance after showing symptoms of Covid-19.

She claimed that she was taken to KIMS Bahrain Medical Centre (KBMC) in Umm Al Hassam, but that the nurse treated her outside in the bus, and said the centre did not have facility for intravenous fluid.

The ministry yesterday clarified that it was closely following up the case.

Referring to the actress’ claims, it said that the patient had received the needed consultation and treatment according to the current Covid-19 treatment protocols.

“According to records, the patient called 999 complaining of fever and fatigue. Transport was arranged for the patient to be evaluated at KBMC.”

The ministry added that the patient left the facility on her own, without completing the treatment. The medical team, on its routine follow-up, contacted the patient and she reported of fever, which, the ministry added, was “a Covid-19 symptom that could persist for a while”.

“The patient was again arranged to be taken to KBMC where she is receiving treatment and is under medical supervision and her health is good.”

The ministry urged people to co-operate and support its efforts in providing the best help.

The GDN reported last week of a similar allegation on social media that an ambulance was delayed in reaching a Covid-19 patient.

The ministry dismissed the claims made by the family, that the patient was low on oxygen. It explained that as per SMC admission procedures, the emergency doctor was the authority to classify the status of a patient and if stable with mild symptoms, the patient would be recommended home isolation.




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