‘This is indeed a war’: Poland’s health service struggles to cope with third wave of coronavirus

Poland’s health minister has warned that the country is waging “a war” to contain a third wave of the coronavirus, describing scenes of exhausted doctors and nurses due to a “deficit of personnel” in overwhelmed hospitals.

Speaking to Polish radio station RMF 24, Health Minister Adam Niedzielski discussed the challenges facing medical staff, after the country recorded its highest single-day increase in coronavirus deaths on Thursday.

Addressing reports of doctors and nurses needing IV drips and oxygen due to their exhaustion, Niedzielski admitted that “these are the toughest, the most difficult pictures,” describing “the intensity of work” facing medical professionals as “significant” due to “the deficit of personnel.”

This is indeed a war, and the situation requires non-standard behaviors.

The government has extended Covid-19 restrictions until at least April 19, and they include keeping kindergartens, shops, and entertainment venues closed.

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Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki has urged Poles to be vigilant, stating, “We are one step away from crossing the border beyond which we will not be able to properly heal our citizens.”

Cases of Covid-19 have soared in Poland, as a new wave of the virus has swept across Europe, with around 190,000 new infections being reported in each of the past two weeks, taking the nation to 2.5 million confirmed cases of the disease.

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