Challenges about Reorganizing a Hospital to Respond to the Covid-19 Outbreak: Experience from the University Hospital of Naples “Federico II”, Italy”
Author(s): Montella Emma, Frangiosa Alessandro, Iodice Sabrina, Bellopede Salvatore, Trama Ugo, Triassi Maria
The 2020 pandemic has taken a toll on governments, hospitals and healthcare workers. The newly established Task Force of the University Hospital has sought to answer this huge challenge by applying a Hospital Incident Management System (HIMS). Given the lack of knowledge of this new pandemic, the System was created on the basis of previous organizational and structural models present in the literature and adapted to the Covid-19 pandemic. The response plan has included:
- The conversion or creation of cohorted areas for Covid-19 positive patients;
- The design of routes for pre-triage, diagnosis, and isolation of suspected and confirmed cases;
- The training of all the hospital staff to work with Covid-19 positive patients and the implementation of a health surveillance plan to protect workers for the prevention of clinical and non-clinical risk.
This system required a hospital multidisciplinary and interdepartmental collaboration, using the elements of Surge Capacity: (i) human resource management; (ii) supplies, equipment, logistics and replenishment mechanisms; (iii) specific skills for critical areas of care; (iv) overall management of hospital resources, such as the expansion of spaces and premises. Our goals were: the increase of hospital overload capacity to ensure a high level of care, the biocontainment of confirmed and suspected cases, to continue to provide safe critical care to non-Covid-19 patients and ensure a safe environment for both the healthcare operators involved and the patients. In this work we report our experience in the preparation of the hospital to the last health emergency.