Bangladesh Catholic hospitals treat Covid-19 patients with Pope’s ventilators

Three ventilators donated by Pope Francis are being used in Catholic hospitals in Dhaka, Dinajpur and Jessore.

By Vatican News

The Catholic Church of Bangladesh has expressed its gratitude to Pope Francis for donating three ventilators in the country’s fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.

Donated through the Apostolic Nuncio, a ventilator was sent to Dhaka and the others were sent to two Catholic hospitals in Dinajpur and Jessore.

The Holy See’s Press Office had announced on June 26 that the Pope had donated 35 ventilators to 13 countries with fragile healthcare systems, as a gesture of his closeness and support in their fight against the Covid-19 virus. 

Among the beneficiaries Haiti, Dominican Republic, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Honduras, Mexico, Venezuela, Cameroon, Bangladesh, Ukraine and Zimbabwe.  

Pope’s gift a blessing

Father Kamal Corraya, Executive Director of the St. John Vianney Hospital in Dhaka, which received one of the ventilators, said the Pope’s gift for their intensive care unit has been a blessing. “It will be very useful for assisting coronavirus patients,” he told the Vatican’s Fides news agency. 

Their hospital’s medical team, Fr. Corraya said, keeps in touch with Covid-19 positive patients at home and advises, motivates and provides them with necessary instructions, which is of great help especially to the poorest.  The hospital provides medical care to anyone who asks.

Dr Edward Pallab Rozario, a Catholic doctor at the hospital, also expressed his gratitude to the Pope.  “The gift of the Holy See is a blessing and is really precious for the small Christian community in Bangladesh,” he told Fides. 

In agreement with the Health Department of the Government of Bangladesh, St. John Vianney Hospital collects samples of swab tests and sends them for analysis to the state Institute of Epidemiology Disease Control and Research. Over the past few months, the Catholic hospital has been regularly carrying out hundreds of swab tests.  It is opening a new operating room soon. 

Hospital’s history

The hospital has been active since November 2019, when Cardinal Patrick D’Rozario, Archbishop of Dhaka, inaugurated it in the presence of the civil and religious authorities. It is located in one of the busiest areas of the city and near the Holy Rosary Catholic Church, which has about 15,000 faithful, including local Catholics and migrants.

On April 29, the facility was temporarily closed down and the entire staff of over 60 employees was placed in self-quarantine after 22 medical staff tested positive for Covid-19. After their recovery, the hospital resumed its activity fully.

In Bangladesh, the Catholic Church manages 12 hospitals, 78 dispensaries, 6 leper hospitals, 15 homes for the elderly and the disabled