States are offering generous salary hikes in an effort to attract doctors and nurses to help treat coronavirus patients.
In Coahuila, Health Minister Roberto Bernal Gómez had been unable to find doctors willing to work in the city of Monclova due to the high rate of infection.
So he began offering monthly salaries of up to 60,000 pesos (nearly US $2,500) for specialists.
In 2019 a Physicians Compensation Report by the website Medscape revealed that, on average, Mexican doctors earned around 16,146 pesos per month (US $672).
Bernal also confirmed that all medical personnel who have been infected with the coronavirus will be able to return to their jobs once they recover and will receive the higher salary.
One hospital in Monclova was particularly hard hit: by late April more than 30 staff were infected and five doctors had died.
Baja California Sur Governor Carlos Mendoza Davis announced that the salaries of doctors, nurses, chemists and radiologists under contract with the state will increase by 60% in recognition of their efforts in caring for coronavirus patients.
Salary increases are in the works for Chihuahua, too, where doctors and support staff will receive a 30% raise.
In Guanajuato, the state government is intent on offering medical staff better working conditions and will place at least 402 healthcare workers on the state payroll.
Quintana Roo is now offering doctors monthly salaries ranging from 20,000 to 40,000 pesos a month depending on whether they are general practitioners or specialists.
In Veracruz, doctors earn between 26,000 and 35,000 pesos a month and in Colima they earn slightly less, from 22,000 to 35,000 pesos.
In Jalisco, Morelos, Nayarit, Tabasco and Yucatán doctors receive similar salaries ranging from 19,000 to 30,000 pesos.
As of last Friday, 215 doctors had been hired in the state of México, 122 in Querétaro, 75 in Chihuahua, 44 in Aguascalientes, 25 in Quintana Roo, 13 in Guerrero and nine in Morelos.
Five states have hired a total of 1,099 new nurses, but many more are needed.
Rosa Amarilis Zárate Grajales, director of the National School of Nursing and Obstetrics, says that Mexico needs to hire another 350,000 nurses in order to meet the demand caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Currently, there are 315,000 nurses working in Mexico.
Source: Milenio (sp)