Coronavirus: what was most feared begins to happen in Venezuela

"I have a 40-degree fever, I'm almost fainting. I haven't eaten since yesterday and, if that's like that then I'm screwed." The oil worker Javier Gutiérrez died a few days after recording an audio that went through social networks to confirm that the virus is already threatening Venezuela . A heartbreaking account of his passage through several hospitals without being attended: in one they told him that he did have coronavirus, but in another they assured him that it was only pneumonia.

And all this in Maracaibo , the cursed city. The oil capital besieged by the different revolutionary plagues, the great paradigm of Chavismo, is the first major city affected by covid-19, as if it were predestined for it. With the hospitals collapsed, with six doctors dead, with infected oil workers and with the Las Pulgas market, where food is sold in the open air under suffocating heat and in the midst of decomposed garbage, which has become the country's largest contagion center.

The first ravages hit a population fearful of going to public hospitals, and without money to pay for a private clinic. Venezuela's second city faces the worst coronavirus outbreak in the worst possible conditions: with constant power outages, which go hand in hand with severe water and gasoline shortages.

According to the government, there are almost a thousand infected in Zulia, but there is absolute distrust of revolutionary statistics, which currently report 5,130 infected and 42 deaths nationwide. Figures refuted by experts working with the Democratic Parliament, which bring the unreported deceased to at least 72 for a total of 114. Among the dead not included by the government are 29 victims in Maracaibo, including Javier Gutiérrez.

In total 500 tests disappeared on the way to Caracas, according to the complaint made by deputy José Manuel Olivares. The concerns in what was the richest region in the country are also a warning to the rest of the nation, despite the constant victorious harangues of the Bolivarian authorities.

So far, more than 50 doctors from the border state of Zulia have been infected and six have died, according to the College of Physicians. Two other doctors are hospitalized in intensive care at the University Hospital, the only "sentinel" in the area, as the government of Nicolás Maduro defines specialized centers against coronavirus.

Without light and water
The hospital does not escape constant blackouts, the other epidemic that since last year hits its inhabitants every day, and never has water. The patients themselves must bring the water to drink and wash. To this situation we must add that there are not enough protective equipment for doctors and nurses, so health workers must recycle their worn masks and gloves. Many survive on wages of $ 4 a month, while a face mask sells for $ 1.

According to the latest national survey on the impact of the covid-19, this week, 73.4% of Venezuelans suffer cuts in water service, often of poor quality. More than 20% have been without water for more than a week.

In the country's hospitals, failures in the supply of gloves exceed 75%. The deficiencies extend to gloves (they fail 75% of the time), masks (56.25%) and disinfectant gel (87.50%). Calls to achieve these biosecurity elements and the demand for volunteers for the hospital are constant on social networks.

"When they get damaged and can't get a replacement, they just don't go back to the hospital. There is a huge staff shortage. We have wards with 40 patients attended by just one doctor and two nurses. Many times dozens of patients have to share a single bathroom, which never has water. The smell is nauseating," confessed to Argentina newspaper La Nación a hospital doctor who asked not to mention her name for fear of retaliation. There have been layoffs, including the previous director of the hospital, for reporting what is happening.

There are already almost 400 patients with coronavirus in that hospital, which only has seven intensive care beds for the most serious cases, according to three consulted doctors who spoke anonymously. The Vice President of Parliament, Juan Pablo Guanipa, certified that 183 of the 200 beds in the hospital are occupied by patients with coronavirus. "The hospital is about to collapse, forget that there are enough respirators," said the deputy.

"There is a massive resignation of nurses and doctors in all hospitals, because they do not have supplies to protect themselves or to work. They are totally defenseless. The other coronavirus hospital is in Sur del Lago and is in the same terrible conditions. The government barely reports a part of the cases, there are many more," said MP Nora Bracho.

One of the doctors assured that due to the terrible conditions of the hospitals, many people with coronavirus symptoms prefer to stay home without being tested, whose results can take up to a month because they are only processed at the National Institute of Hygiene in Caracas. "Many more are infected, and many of them are dying in their homes," he denounced.

Source: La Nación
Coronavirus: what was most feared begins to happen in Venezuela Coronavirus: what was most feared begins to happen in Venezuela Reviewed by PostDiscus on June 30, 2020 Rating: 5

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