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HealthMin Voiculescu, about patient who died in Belgium: I was personally involved in his transfer

Inquam Photos / Octav Ganea
Vlad Voiculescu

Minister of Health Vlad Voiculescu declared on Monday that he was personally involved in the transfer of the burn patient who died in Belgium, appointing a secretary of state in this sense and based on a protocol, according to AGERPRES.

"The control body is going to conduct investigations at this point, research at this time, they are checking based on medical records, health records do not change from day to the next. (...) The control body cannot change something that was done or not done well for this patient. At the moment I found out, I was personally involved so that this patient could be transferred urgently to a place where he could be treated. Personal involvement means that I appointed a secretary of state and called Dr. Raed Arafat [head of the Department for Emergency Situations (DSU)], because DSU is in charge, according to a protocol between DSU and the Ministry of Health, checks if there are places abroad, deals with the transfer of the patient," Voiculescu explained.

He added that this is a signal protocol between DSU and the Ministry of Health for more than 6 months, according to which checks are being conducted to find out if there are places abroad for the transfer of a patient.

"I got involved trying to speed up the transfer of the patient, I called Dr. Arafat, I inquired why he wasn't transferred and I made sure he would be transferred. The procedure is very clear, established. The patient, if he cannot be treated in Romania, has to be transferred abroad as soon as possible. The problem, if I understood correctly, the underlying issue, is that there are not many places abroad where these patients can be transferred, on the one hand, due to the COVID crisis, and there are other reasons, too. In this case, I understood that there was first a problem related to the place where he would be transferred and there was a problem related to the plane from DSU, which was solved in a few hours," said Voiculescu.

The 51-year-old man, who on January 20 suffered an electrical burn on about 64% of his body surface and multiple traumatic injuries from falling from a height and who was transferred to a hospital in Belgium, died, the Health Ministry informed on Monday.

The patient was initially transported to the Constanta County Emergency Clinical Hospital, and then, on January 21, he was transferred to the "Sfantul Spiridon" County Emergency Clinical Hospital in Iasi.

On January 28, 2021, the flight mission for the transfer to Belgium was canceled "for technical reasons, according to the Department for Emergency Situations within the Ministry of Internal Affairs", and the patient was hospitalized at the Floreasca Emergency Clinical Hospital in Bucharest.

The next day he was transferred, by a humanitarian flight operated by the Ministry of National Defense, to the Center des Grands Brules - IMTR within the Grand Hopital de Charleroi in Loverval, Belgium.

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