A press conference at the Sarajevo University Clinical Center (KCUS) confirmed the authenticity of another letter that appeared in public last weekend, but also the fact that respirators imported by “Srebrena malina” are not suitable for the treatment of COVID patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS).
Anesthesiologist Lejla Vidovic said at yesterday’s conference that she is one of the authors of the so-called another letter which was said to have been an internal act of the KCUS.
“Together with my colleagues, I wrote and signed this letter, which was supposed to be internal. It is the usual way in which we communicate. We are not hiding, these days we are under pressure from all sides,” said Vidovic.
It was noted in item 1 of the letter that these devices “do not have the possibility of using PEEP at all. They do not have sufficient maximum flow, do not have the possibility of continuous oxygenation and recruitment maneuvers, do not provide the ability to monitor the necessary ventilation parameters (compliance, driving pressure, plateau), so considering the above-mentioned item they cannot be used for the specific respiratory pathological condition of Covid-19 patients.”
It is easy to conclude that even certain doctors from KCUS do not think that the disputed respirators should be used to treat patients with COVID that were diagnosed with the acute respiratory syndrome, for which the devices should have been procured last year.
The real question is why in most hospitals in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (FBiH), the disputed respirators were set aside or returned to the Civil Protection, and in cases where they are used, such as in Zenica, they are used only for oxygen support.
Amela Katica Mulalic, head of the Clinic for Anesthesia and Resuscitation at KCUS, said that Drager respirators are most common in the respiratory center and that they put all life-threatening patients there.
“We also have Maquet, Mindray, ACM … There was a sufficient number of respirators,” she told, noting that the highest mortality is on these respirators because they are used for the most severe cases.
Sebija Izetbegovic, the director of KCUS, in a way, confirmed the deficiency of purchased devices in her statement, saying that “these respirators are used by choice depending on the clinical picture”.
To recall, the expert of the Prosecutor’s Office of BiH determined 11 months ago that the purchased devices cannot be used in the intensive care department.
What is disputable in this whole story? It is disputable that the Government of FBiH paid 10.5 million BAM for 100 respirators in the last year that cannot be used in the intensive care department but exclusively as mechanical oxygen support. Was the goal of the FBiH Government to pay 10.5 million for the devices, and for their function to be limited? Who approved it? What would happen if the entity came to the situation that at one point much more respirators are needed for severe patients? How would then the role of the respirators procured by “Srebrena malina” be justified?”
If the goal was to procure any device for mechanical ventilation, as was justified a year ago, then why much more devices were not procured, which serve primarily for oxygen support of patients for that amount of money. Were the purchased respirators overpaid?
The point of the story is that respirators with limited usability were procured, and that should not have been the intention of the federal authorities, at least not after the announcement of