Twenty doctors have been infected with Covid-19 at one Mexico City hospital, leaving just six physicians to care for 78 coronavirus patients.
According to a report by the newspaper El Financiero, the 20 doctors contracted Covid-19 while working at the IMSS General Hospital in Tlatelolco, a neighborhood just north of Mexico City’s historic center.
One 52-year-old emergency room doctor lost his life to the disease while another of the same age with no underlying health conditions is fighting for his life on a ventilator at the National Institute of Respiratory Diseases in the south of the capital.
Two doctors at the IMSS Tlatelolco hospital told El Financiero that they are confronting the pandemic not only with a shortage of staff but also a lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) and training. They also said that the hospital lacks hygiene and medical equipment, explaining that some of the ventilators are out of order.
A doctor whose real name was not given in order to protect her privacy said that just six physicians are working across shifts in the area of the hospital where Covid-19 patients are being treated.
“To intubate a patient, it takes them a long time to bring a ventilator and sometimes they’re broken,” she said.
Despite the 20 infections, health authorities have denied the existence of a coronavirus outbreak among the hospital’s medical personnel, another doctor told El Financiero, adding that the staff who are still working have not been tested.
The doctors said that letters they have sent to the hospital’s director and their unions to outline their concerns and demand they be given the PPE and medical equipment they require have gone unanswered. They also said they have not received the 20% bonus promised by federal authorities for medical personnel who work directly with Covid-19 patients.
“The ignorance and especially the lack of empathy [on the part of heath authorities] … has been surprising,” the doctor said.
Source: El Financiero (sp)