Deal with Private Hospitals/ Sole Spokesperson on Cienfuegos CaseBy Ricardo Guzman | Tue, 10/20/2020 - 10:52
Agreement with private hospitals. The government of Mexico will extend and expand the collaboration agreement with private hospitals by which they will now also care for patients with COVID-19, President López Obrador said. “The agreement will be expanded so that in this new stage we can have beds, equipment and doctors from private hospitals to care for COVID-19 patients for free,” he said. With this change, health authorities will have an additional 150 beds available in private hospitals. In the agreement All Together Against COVID-19, signed in April, private hospitals pledged to use 50 percent of their beds for multiple procedures and ease the saturation in public sector facilities that were focused on COVID-19 cases. Minister of Health Jorge Alcocer said that the states where the deal will be implemented and when it would start would be decided on Wednesday, Oct. 28.
AMLO will be sole spokesperson on Cienfuegos case. President López Obrador said that considering the “sensitivity of the issue,” he will personally be the sole spokesperson for the Gen. Salvador Cienfuegos case. “This case is attracting a great deal of interest for its sensitivity that I want to be the spokesperson, so others don’t start talking and we can prevent any manipulation of information,” he said. The minister of national defense (SEDENA) in former president Enrique Peña Nieto’s administration, Cienfuegos is under arrest in the US. A major investigation is expected to impact the Mexican armed forces.
Call to avoid gatherings. Deputy Minister of Health Hugo López-Gatell reiterated that the pandemic in Mexico is still active, and he called on the people to prevent gatherings to celebrate the Day of the Dead on Nov. 1, and the Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe on Dec. 12, since both celebrations represent a high risk for contagion. “The more people congregate, the greater the risk,” he said. López-Gatell stated the Ministry of the Interior (Segob) and the Mexican catholic church are analyzing changes to the Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe celebration that includes an annual mass pilgrimage to the Guadalupe Basilica with people coming from all over the country.
Strong peso, jobs recovery. President López Obrador applauded the Mexican peso’s appreciation against the US dollar (MX$21.07 per dollar today) and stressed that 320,000 jobs had been recovered since the COVID-19 pandemic started. “If the trend continues, we will reach (job numbers) we had before the pandemic soon. We will get back to the 20.5 million jobs registered with social security (IMSS) at the end of March,” he said.
Chiapas going green. Chiapas will likely advance to green in the COVID-19 epidemiological traffic light, President López Obrador said. “It is very likely that Chiapas will enter a green traffic light next week. Campeche remains also in green,” he said. The president noted that eight states have seen a mild increase in cases but that no new outbreaks or a resurgence have been confirmed. Deputy Minister of Health Hugo López-Gatell highlighted that the number of infections has been decreasing for 12 consecutive weeks in Mexico.
17,891 Mexican repatriated. Minister of Foreign Affairs (SRE) Marcelo Ebrard said that to date, 17,891 Mexicans stranded abroad have been repatriated after the COVID-19 pandemic and that free tests are available in 12 US consulates for Mexicans living there. The minister noted that the agreement signed with Pfizer, CanSino and AstraZeneca to provide over 100 million doses of a potential COVID-19 vaccine is moving forward.
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