MEXICO CITY (AP) — Interns and resident doctors at a public hospital on the outskirts of Mexico’s capital say that 26 of them have tested positive for the COVID-19 disease and request personal protective equipment and better training for all of the hospital’s staff.
In an open letter to Mexico’s health secretary, the doctors and medical students detailed a situation where basic protocols were not followed, a lack of supervision left inexperienced medical staff to fend for themselves and staff had to find and buy their own protective equipment. The letter’s authors were not named, but said they are the doctors and interns now quarantined and suffering from the effects of the new coronavirus.
A lack of resources and training in the face of the pandemic has spurred a number of protests by workers in Mexico’s public health system in recent weeks. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has conceded that the system does not have the number of doctors and nurses that it needs as the epidemic begins to ramp up. One planeload of medical gear arrived from China this week and a second one was scheduled to arrive Friday night.
Mexico has more than 3,000 confirmed COVID-19 infections and nearly 200 deaths. For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.
Zoé Robledo, director of Mexico public health system, said Wednesday that talk of a COVID-19 outbreak at the Tlalnepantla hospital was “incorrect.” He said an investigation showed three starting points for the outbreak: a patient who has recovered, a doctor who didn’t have contact with COVID-19 patients and another doctor who was also working in another health system. He differentiated it from an outbreak at a public hospital in the northern city of Monclova, which an investigation confirmed spread within the hospital.
Source: Associated Press
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