HealthManagement, Volume 20 - Issue 3, 2020


How is COVID-19 affecting patient management?

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, critical care units are overloaded with patients who require urgent and successful guided intubation for treatment and airway management. The more patients with COVID-19 there are, the greater is the need for treatment and continued patient management.

What does this mean for endoscopy patients?

All endoscopies on COVID-19 patients, or suspected COVID-19 patients, should be considered high-risk. The main endoscopic challenge is minimizing the risk of contamination from procedure to procedure. For diseases not related to the outbreak, endoscopy departments must now implement additional hygiene procedures while treating patients affected by COVID-19. To ensure patient safety, proper processes must be in place to minimize the risk of cross-contamination.

How do needs in EMEA markets differ?

Market demands vary depending on patient needs and hospital resources. Italy and Spain hold the largest number of COVID-19 infected patients, but the number of ICU beds, access to medical equipment, and healthcare personnel all play a role in each market’s needs during this pandemic.

In many markets, clinicians require an increased number of endoscopes and faster turnaround of available endoscopes with the best hygiene conditions. We are helping achieve this by offering solutions that fulfill the growing needs and ensuring scopes are readily available at the point of care, safe and virus-free for the patient. Our PlasmaTYPHOON offers ultrafast drying of endoscopic channels, so we can greatly reduce the endoscope turnaround time. For storage and transport, the PlasmaBAG provides a dry, closed, dust-free and aseptic atmosphere created by ozone injection.

How has PENTAX Medical responded to urgent demand in critical care units?

At the onset of the COVID-19 outbreak, we donated $430,000 worth of medical devices to fill urgent needs. Since then, we have seen incredible acts of humanity during this challenging time. Supporting ICUs is a crucial step in fighting COVID-19. As feedback from ICU clinicians highlights the need for more scopes, we have increased the production capacity to keep up with this demand, aiming to support the growing needs and provide greater access to safe and efficient solutions.

You recently organized a COVID-19 webinar, together with Prof. Arcidiacono and Prof. Lepelletier, ‘The equipment journey from patient to patient.’ What were the key takeaways?

This webinar provided an opportunity for peers to share their knowledge in managing this crisis. Prof. Arcidiacono covered valuable best practices, including the relevance of changing processes and behaviors, using procedures to reduce the risk of infection between patients. Prof. Lepelletier shared his in-depth knowledge of factors for infection transmission and insight into potential solutions to minimize the risk of contamination and infection.

For future webinars, what are the upcoming topics?

We will continue to team up with clinicians to address and share best practices to manage the COVID-19 pandemic. The next webinar, ‘COVID-19 – Into the next phase: Management of people, processes and products in endoscopy,’ will be held on 13 May, 2020, at 14:00 (CET), and focus on the second phase of the pandemic.

In conclusion, what are your final thoughts on combating COVID-19?

PENTAX Medical is fully committed to supporting the treatment of those affected by COVID-19, and to ensuring endoscopes and supporting medical equipment are readily available. As we work to better serve our healthcare systems, we would like to thank all critical care personnel for their continued efforts to help the patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Disclosure of conflict of interest: Point-of-View articles are the sole opinion of the author(s) and they are part of the Corporate Engagement or Educational Community Programme.