Govt hospitals need 16,000 more beds


KUALA LUMPUR: Government hospitals nationwide need 16,000 more beds, especially in the Klang Valley, to cater to the increasing number of patients.

Deputy Health Minister Dr Hilmi Yahaya said Malaysia now had a ratio of 1.85 hospital beds to every 1,000 population and this did not reach the international standard ratio of 2.5:1,000.

“The difference in ratio shows the need for more hospital beds (16,000) while the ministry encourages day care for patients requiring simple medical procedures, instead of overnight stays at the hospitals,” he said after opening the 3rd Annual Healthcare Management Excellence programme, here, today.

Present was the ministry’s Medical Development Division director, Dr Azman Abu Bakar.

Hilmi said day care involved over 300 health procedures that could be done within a day that could save on the use of hospital beds.

Meanwhile, Dr Azman said the day care procedures were now successfully applied in the government hospitals nationwide and this was seen as a paradigm shift in the health sector.

“The best example is the success of Raja Permaisuri Bainun Hospital in Ipoh which has achieved 40% in post-surgery day care procedure application.”

He said the introduction of the Transit Lounge, a waiting area for patients after they were allowed to leave the hospital wards also helped to reduce the shortage of beds for other patients.

“Patients need not be in the wards while waiting for their family members to arrive, as they will be transferred to the Transit Lounge and the medications sent to them there,” he added.