Turkey, Health, Latest on coronavirus outbreak

Turkish president opens giant city hospital in Istanbul

Erdogan says Turkey set to make 5,000 ventilators by end of May for use in fight against COVID-19

Erdoğan Çağatay Zontur,Gökhan Ergöçün   | 20.04.2020
Turkish president opens giant city hospital in Istanbul

ANKARA

The Turkish president inaugurated Monday a giant city hospital in Istanbul as the country intensifies fight against the coronavirus outbreak.

"Turkey, standing on its own two feet, is demonstrating its power at a time when international organizations are losing their meaning," he added. 

Giant city hospital inaugurated in Istanbul

Turkish president Erdogan inaugurated Monday a giant city hospital in Istanbul as the country intensifies fight against the coronavirus outbreak.

Erdogan also said Turkey will produce 5,000 medical ventilators to fight the novel coronavirus by the end of May.

“While world is facing difficulties, Turkey has successfully overcome hurdles to [making] medical ventilators,” Recep Tayyip Erdogan said, speaking at the opening ceremony of the new Basaksehir City Hospital in Istanbul.

Also speaking at the event, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said at the new facility, built to fight COVID-19: "Just as all city hospitals in Turkey, all the beds at Basaksehir City Hospital – 2,686 beds – have intensive care equipment, and all can be used for intensive care when necessary.”

Saying that some of the tested ventilators were delivered to the Health Ministry on Monday, Mustafa Varank, technology and industry minister, added: "Hopefully, 5,000 devices will be produced by the end of May."

While the novel coronavirus pandemic has incapacitated many developed countries, Turkey is still standing tall, he stressed.

Ventilators are nearly impossible to buy, he said, adding: "That's why we took action at the very beginning of the process to produce these devices using our own means."

A Turkish technology enterprise, BIOSYS, developed the device, and after the pandemic hit, Turkish firms launched a mobilization to start mass production of the device, he said.

He added that dozens of Turkish engineers worked hard and managed to set up mass production of the first indigenous intensive care ventilator in just 14 days.

The coronavirus death toll in Turkey reached 2,017 as of Sunday, with 86,306 cases to date.

After originating in China last December, COVID-19, the disease caused by coronavirus, has spread to at least 185 countries and regions across the world.

The pandemic has killed nearly 166,000 people, with total infections exceeding 2.41 million, according to figures compiled by the U.S.’ Johns Hopkins University.

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