Mexico Leads in Health Worker DeathsBy Jorge Ramos Zwanziger | Wed, 03/17/2021 - 08:42
In its Epidemiological Update for COVID-19, the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) stated that Mexico saw 229,458 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 3,534 deaths among health personnel in Mexico from January 2020 to March 2021. This number puts Mexico in first place in COVID-19 casualties among health personnel in the continent. The US ranks in second place with 1,387 deaths. Mexico also ranks fourth in total casualties in the world with a total of 193,853 deceased, reported JHU CSSE COVID-19 Data.
Carissa Etienne, Director of PAHO, explained that Mexico and the US “represent almost 85 percent of all deaths in health workers in the region,” as one in seven positive cases dies, reports Animal Político. “So far, we have the highest number of infected workers worldwide,” warned Etienne. Nurses account for 42 percent of those infected, doctors up to 27 percent and other hospital employees such as technicians, aides and maintenance and cleaning staff account for 31 percent, reported AA.
Mexico also has one of the slowest vaccination rates worldwide. According to JHI CSSE COVID-19 Data, the country has applied at least one dose to 3.79 million people, which rounds up to 2.97 percent of the population, and has fully vaccinated 609,889 people, about 0.48 percent of the population. However, for the past seven consecutive weeks, the number of active COVID-19 cases, deaths and hospitalizations have decreased, said Health Minister, Jorge Alcocer Varela, reported Milenio.
Alcocer also announced that a strategy that allows children to return to in-person classes is being developed. “The future of children is at risk. We have a responsibility to minimize exposure. Going back to normal is what we all want but recovering from the pandemic will be as challenging as the pandemic itself,” he added, according to Milenio.
Last Saturday, Mexico received its largest batch of COVID-19 vaccines, comprising 1 million doses from Sinovac, tweeted Minister of Foreign Affairs, Marcelo Ebrard. The government also announced that the contract for Sinovac’s vaccine will be expanded. It initially included 10 million vaccines to be delivered between March and May. Now, it will add a further 10 million doses to be delivered between May and July. Sinovac’s vaccine has a 49.62 percent efficacy rate and is able to prevent 78 percent of light COVID-19 cases and 100 percent of severe cases, reports CNN Español.