Xinhua News Agency, Hong Kong, November 19 Title: Transformation of emergency hospital to continue its mission of aiding Hong Kong
Xinhua News Agency reporter Zhang Yashi
“I’m very happy that I can have a check-up today!” Mrs. Mai said happily. Her husband, who was by her side, also looked happy.
This is the diagnostic and treatment equipment taken at the Central Hong Kong Emergency Hospital located in Lok Ma Chau Loop, Hong Kong (photo taken on November 13).Photo by Xinhua News Agency reporter Zhu Wei
Mrs. Mak, a Hong Kong resident, began to suffer from sciatica a few years ago and sought medical treatment at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Kowloon. Recently, her lower back pain has worsened and she also feels numbness in her legs. The doctor recommended that she undergo an MRI and scheduled it until 2025.
On November 13, free shuttle buses transported patients to the Central Hong Kong Emergency Hospital located in Lok Ma Chau Loop, Hong Kong.Photo by Xinhua News Agency reporter Zhu Wei
The service resources of Hong Kong’s public hospitals are tight, and some non-urgent patients like Mrs. Mak often have to wait for a long time before they have the opportunity to receive examinations. In April this year, the Hong Kong Hospital Authority launched the “Day Radiological Diagnostic Service Pilot Scheme” at the “Central Aid Hong Kong Emergency Hospital” to help alleviate this situation. As of the end of October, the program has served more than 5,700 cases, and Mrs. Mai is one of the beneficiaries.
Emergency hospital transformation supports radiology diagnosis
Interior view of the Central Hong Kong Emergency Hospital (photo taken on November 13).Photo by Xinhua News Agency reporter Zhu Wei
During the COVID-19 epidemic, the central government assisted in building an emergency hospital in Lok Ma Chau Loop, Hong Kong. It was named the “Central Aided Hong Kong Emergency Hospital” and was delivered to the Hong Kong SAR Government on December 30, 2022. As Hong Kong society gradually returns to normal, the Hong Kong Hospital Authority provides day hospital services in emergency hospitals. Through the “Day Radio Diagnostic Service Pilot Scheme”, resources are effectively used to meet the needs of Hong Kong’s public medical services.
“The birth and transformation of emergency hospitals give us the opportunity to deal with problems such as long waiting times for patients for examinations.” Xian Yiquan, clinical services coordinator of the New Territories East Hospital Cluster of the Hong Kong Hospital Authority, said in an interview with a reporter from Xinhua News Agency that the emergency hospitals have many good features. equipment, the HA can make good use of them to meet the medical needs of patients.
Xian Yiquan said that the Hospital Authority has always wanted to implement an ambulatory medical model for related services, but discussions for many years have failed to come to fruition, mainly because public medical institutions are already very busy and cannot free up space. The emergency hospital brings an opportunity to launch the day medical model and play a diversion role to reduce the pressure on public hospitals. Patients can now receive computer scan (CT) and MRI diagnostic services at emergency hospitals through a pilot program.
On November 13, Xian Yiquan (first right), clinical service coordinator of the New Territories East Hospital Cluster of the Hong Kong Hospital Authority, and Li Xingfan (second right), chairman of the radiology department coordinating committee of the Hong Kong Hospital Authority, met with the Central Hong Kong Emergency Hospital in Lok Ma Chau Loop, Hong Kong. Medical staff talk.Photo by Xinhua News Agency reporter Zhu Wei
In the early stages of the implementation of the pilot scheme, the emergency hospital mainly served patients referred from the two hospital clusters of New Territories East and New Territories West. Due to the positive response from the public, the service scope has now been extended to patients in all public hospitals in Hong Kong. The service targets of the pilot program are mainly non-inpatient patients aged between 12 and 80 years old, who are non-emergency, stable and able to move freely. Medical staff will send invitations to suitable patients, and patients will decide whether to participate in the plan.
The pilot program has been highly praised by patients. Chairman of the Radiology Co-ordinating Committee of the Hong Kong Hospital Authority, Li Xingfan, believes that this is related to the hospital’s operating model. Li Xingfen introduced that most public hospitals that provide radiology services have emergency departments. Unforeseen emergencies may occur, which may affect citizens who have made appointments for examinations. Emergency hospitals only provide examination services, and the time arrangements are as expected. within, making it easier for citizens to obtain the services they need.
Patient waiting time is significantly shortened
Data provided by the Hong Kong Hospital Authority shows that as of October 31, emergency hospitals have served a total of 5,746 cases under the pilot plan, including 4,277 computer scan and 1,469 MRI scan cases.
“The response from citizens has been good. We estimate that we can handle about 10,000 cases by the end of this year, far exceeding the target of about 7,000 cases we estimated at the beginning of the year.” Li Xingfen told reporters that it is expected that by the end of March next year, the number will reach 13,000 about.
At present, the emergency hospital’s service scope includes providing computer scan angiography examinations of the brain, sinuses, orbits, chest, abdomen and other parts of the body, as well as MRI examinations of the spine and different joints. Li Xingfen said that most of the cases currently examined in emergency hospitals do not involve the injection of developing drugs, and the risks are relatively low. The emergency hospital has been operating smoothly in the past six months, and everyone’s confidence has increased day by day. The hospital will gradually increase computerized imaging examinations and provide ultrasound imaging services in December.
In the past six months, the waiting time for patients participating in the pilot scheme has been significantly reduced. Li Xingfen said that the median waiting time for computer scan examination in Hong Kong public hospitals is generally more than 120 weeks. After patients participate in the pilot program, the waiting time is reduced to about 38 weeks; the waiting time for MRI examination is from more than 120 weeks. weeks are compressed into less than 50 weeks.
Mr. Jane, 63, is a patient of Queen Mary Hospital and needs regular computer scans. The next examination is scheduled for 2027. Recently, Mr. Kan was invited by medical staff to participate in a pilot program and go to the emergency hospital for examination, and he gladly accepted it.
“If there are changes in the condition, you can know early and receive early treatment, which is a good thing for the patient.” Mr. Jian said.
Making good use of resources and providing considerate services are praised
The reporter observed in the emergency hospital and found that the hospital environment is comfortable and spacious. On the day of the interview, there were more than a dozen patients and their families in the waiting area. The staff of the Hong Kong Hospital Authority issued number plates to patients, registered them, and arranged for them to go to the examination area for examination in sequence.
The examination room is equipped with advanced instruments, and the ceiling of the room is also uniquely designed: the pattern of blue sky and white clouds makes the patient feel like looking up at the clear sky when lying down for examination, which helps to relax.
Considering that the emergency hospitals are located far away, the Hong Kong Hospital Authority has arranged free shuttle bus services at the exits of three MTR stations in the New Territories: Sheung Shui Station, Yuen Long Station and Siu Hong Station. The journey takes about 15 minutes. “The patient can complete the examination in one morning.” Xian Yiquan said.
Liang Xi, a member of the Legislative Council of the Hong Kong SAR and spokesperson for health affairs of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment of Hong Kong, has always been concerned about the development of Hong Kong’s medical and health undertakings. He said that the Hong Kong Hospital Authority deserves praise for its good use of the central government’s assistance facilities and its flexibility.
“This day-time examination model can help reduce the risk of cross-transmission of infectious diseases and relieve the pressure on public hospitals. It deserves continued promotion.” Liang Xi said.
“Like!” “Good arrangements!”… Since the emergency hospital began to provide radiological diagnosis to Hong Kong citizens, many citizens have filled in appreciation cards to praise the hospital’s services and express their gratitude.
[Editor in charge: Zhang Qiaosu]