The most direct impact COVID-19 pandemic will have is through testing and treatment but the extent of upward pressure on health costs depends on the intensity of precautionary measures taken to curb the spread.
H E Dr Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Obaid al Sa’eedi, Minister of Health, said that the sultanate is maintaining the intensity of its precautionary measures following a spate in the new COVID-19-positive cases.
H E Dr Sa’eedi said the slow rate of the spread has helped prepare health establishments (for the reception of patients), noting that The Royal Hospital has only 60 Intensive Care Units (ICU) beds that need to be supplemented by another 100 beds so that the total stands at 160, just enough to cope with the situation.
“The treatment of each COVID-19 patient at the ICU costs RO1,000 per day. As for lab tests, they depend on the type of diagnostic solution used, but the cost averages between RO20 and RO50. This is in addition to required medical equipment and medical team.”
He said that the sultanate operated 16 flights to the Republic of China and that many medical requirements, with another set of diagnostic solutions are likely to be received in the coming days.
“There is sufficient medical equipment and human resources in most of the sultanate’s laboratories, except the Governorate of Musandam, which will receive a diagnostic system in a few days,” he said.
H E Dr Sa’eedi said though the COVID-19 cases are on the rise in the sultanate, numbers in Oman are much less compared to the global levels. “For now, the fatality rate from COVID-19 in Oman is 0.04 per cent,” he said.