This week, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador visited several Latin American countries to strengthen foreign relations and create health-based alliances. Some highlights of the tour include an agreement to provide healthcare services to Guatemalans working in Mexico and the acquisition of Cuba’s COVID-19 vaccine. IMSS-Bienestar also began hiring processes for medical professionals in several states.
Here is the Week in Health!
Starting on May 3, each Tuesday, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s morning press conference will update the advances of the government’s plans to universalize health services through IMSS-Bienestar. The first update provided an analysis of the current status of the institution.
As part of his tour through Central America and the Caribbean, President López Obrador visited Cuba to strengthen diplomatic relations. During the visit, health representatives from both countries signed an agreement of cooperation between the Ministries of Health of Mexico and Cuba, which will provide scholarships for Mexican doctors to visit to Cuba to specialize. The agreement will also allow Mexico to import Cuba’s COVID-19 vaccine, Abdala, which it will use to vaccinate children between five and 12 years old.
In late April, the Johnson & Johnson Institute and Johnson & Johnson MedTech opened the first Innovation Room for Mexican doctors. This is a training space for doctors, surgeons and other health professionals that offers the latest technology in medical devices and training simulators for surgical procedures in the metaverse.
INSABI just issued job postings for several medical and nursing staff. The highest salary for some of the positions is about MX$49,000 (US$2,432.67), which is significantly higher than the average wage for these professionals in Mexico.
Three days after the World Health Organization (WHO) informed of an alarming number of acute childhood hepatitis cases, Mexican authorities issued an epidemiological warning so the country’s health institutions are on high alert. As of Tuesday, 228 cases of acute childhood hepatitis have been reported in minors from at least 20 countries, almost double the number registered 10 days ago, reports the WHO.
During his tour of Central America, President López Obrador agreed with his Guatemalan counterpart, Alejandro Giammattei, to provide medical care to 25,000 Guatemalans through the IMSS. The agreement will benefit Guatemalan citizens who currently work in Chiapas, Tabasco and Campeche and enter Mexico using the border worker card issued by the National Institute of Migration (INM), explained Zoé Robledo, Director General, IMSS.
Numerous vaccines are in the pipeline and others wait to be improved upon, including those for Respiratory Syncytial Virus, HIV and Group B Streptococcus. Although the development of these vaccines represents scientific progress, if they are not applied, people will not benefit from them.
The World Maternal Mental Health Day was observed last week to raise awareness of perinatal mood and anxiety disorders during pregnancy and the first year after childbirth. Between 13-15 percent of mothers suffer from postpartum depression, which can affect up to 56 percent of Mexican women and Latin American women living in the US.
Taxation-free menstrual products were an unprecedented success for menstrual health in Mexico. However, to end period poverty, these products should also be included in President López Obrador’s anti-inflationary plan, said Deputy Martha Tagle.