Three pieces of good news from Slovakia and the Czech Republic about coronavirus

A company preparing the cure has supplier from Slovakia.

Illustrative stock photoIllustrative stock photo (Source: Sme)

1. Slovakia is the world power in medical ventilators

Slovakia does not stand out only in the number of manufactured cars per inhabitant. It also has similar results when it comes to the number of medical ventilators, which are very important in today’s crisis.

The machines are necessary mainly for patients who are in critical condition due to the coronavirus infection. They usually develop a bacterial infection with severe pneumonia.

They then require intensive care and lung ventilators. The machine is breathing for them.

Chinese analysis said that out of 44,000 infected people, about 4.7 percent experienced critical conditions. In Slovakia, there are 72 infected people by now. According to the data, three or four of them experience critical conditions.

The Sme daily was not able to find out how many such people are in Slovakia right now. However, PM Peter Pellegrini talked about two infected cases in ICU last week. But it is not clear whether they are connected to the machines.

There are enough machines because the Chirana company based in Stará Turá is producing and exporting them around the world.

>> Read everything about coronavirus in Slovakia here.

Pellegrini said last week that there are more than 1,000 such machines ready and the government plans to purchase another 100. It means that one machine is meant for 5,450 citizens of Slovakia. To compare, in the Czech Republic it is 450 citizens less. Italy has three times fewer the amount of ventilators per person than the Czech Republic.

The PM said that they have already ordered 20 new ventilators and Chirana should be the supplier. Its financial-technical director Oskar Baranovič said they are stopping all shipping for foreign customers, also for paid orders. "Slovakia and the needs of Slovakia and Slovak hospitals are an absolute priority for us," he said, as quoted by Sme.

Sme reported that Chirana could supply the state with 26 ventilators in March. They will focus on its production so it should not be a problem in upcoming the months to supply the required 100. The price of one machine is between €30,000 and €40,000.

2. Company preparing a cure has a supplier from Slovakia

The supplier for the company Gilead Sciences that is developing a possible cure for the coronavirus is the Slovak company HighChem.

Until June of 2019 its owner was scientist, Robert Mistrík, who was running in the presidential election. Then he gave up in favour of Zuzana Čaputová, who became president.

The Slovak company is owned by multinational concern Thermo Fisher Scientific.

HighChem is developing a system to analyze the metabolites of medicine. These are substances formed in or necessary for metabolism.

"Some drugs do not work directly but are metabolized in the body, thus undergoing enzymatic transformation through the action of enzymes to produce new substances that then treat the body," Mistrík explained, as quoted by Sme.

This system is used also by Gilead Sciences.

3. Easier tests from a Czech doctor

Czech doctor Soňa Peková from the Tilia lab in the Czech village of Pchery has invented an easier test for coronavirus.

Peková said the test is easier to use and it returns the result in five to six hours.

She offers giving instruction to all diagnostic labs that will be interested. Several interested labs are from Slovakia.


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