COVID19 Pandemic – experience from a frontline hospital
About this good practice
The Good Practice implemented by Bergamo Hospital (ASST Papa Giovanni XXIII) during the acute phase of the Pandemic (February – April 2020) was illustrated by the health Director. To deal with the pandemic, the Hospital implemented the following actions:
Crisis Unit: A Unit, coordinated by the health Director and composed of other hospital Directorates, managed the coordination of intensive care units, urgent surgical operations, the sanitisation of environments, logistics and the organisation of the staff employed.
Support from military contingents: The Hospital of Bergamo was supported by military contingents of the Italian Army, foreign military contingents and volunteers.
Recruitment: Additional doctors, biologists, pneumologists, infectious diseases specialists and nurses were hired.
Access Rules: The Hospital decided to change the pre-pandemic protocols. Access Rules were modified by including screening procedures (swabs) at the hospital admission.
Telemedicine: A platform called 'Fenix Televisita' was used to support telemedicine services, guaranteeing data confidentiality, traceability, document archiving, medical consultation reports, validation with a digital signature. It allowed to send dematerialised prescriptions and it was accessible from all devices [PC, tablet, smartphone].
Bergamo Exhibition Centre: A Medical Centre was built at Bergamo Fiera to deal with more patients.
Evidence of success
The above-mentioned procedures, promptly adopted, allowed a coordinated and effective management of the common areas and hospital wards, of the entrances as well as the possibility of assisting patients remotely, in safety, through digital informatics tools.
Potential for learning or transfer
The lessons learned could be identified as follows:
The ability to create a collaborative and cohesive crisis unit in a short time, able to manage and involve several hospital departments.
Strong collaboration among hospital resources, volunteers and military forces in setting up and managing new dedicated emergency spaces.
The introduction of tools which enabled to digitize and to dematerialize all health-related documentation for specialists, patients and citizens.
Introducing new protocols for a secure access to facilities.