In a joint public statement, more than 140 associations of the scientific, academic, union and other organizations of the health sector warned the Government that the criteria under which the reopening of the culture and entertainment sectors is not only inconvenient and lacking in scientific evidence, but it also exposes the country to an increase in deaths at the worst moment of the pandemic.
In fact, they state that mortality from covid-19 It could reach 800 victims each day in the coming weeks if the rate of infections remains close to 30,000 per day.
“The collapse of the health system is undeniable, taking into account the patients who are on the waiting list for admission to the ICU, those ventilated outside the ICU (operating rooms, recovery, hospitalization and emergencies), the number of patients in the Ucres ( Special Respiratory Care Units), the overcrowding in the emergency services and the growing shortage of medicines, supplies, oxygen and technologies that due to their number have exceeded the installed capacity ”, they affirm.
(Also read: Covid-19 reported cases grew 24 percent last week)
Specifically, the claim made by the signatories is that resolution 777 be repealed, which established the new framework for biosafety measures in the country and established the methodology for the reopening of the social, cultural, sports and entertainment sectors.
In this resolution, the Municipal Epidemiological Resilience Index (Irem) is created, which is based on progress in vaccination, seroprevalence, ICU occupation and testing to determine the degree of openness that each municipality can have.
The Irem proposes three cycles: one in which the municipalities, according to their classification, can open these activities with a capacity of 25 percent, another with 50 percent and another with 75 percent.
However, in the opinion of the 140 associations, resolution 777 “has no connection with the epidemiological context of the country” and “this public policy must be subjected to a new analysis of validity, precision, timeliness and relevance to the urgent health situation that it compromises the lives of thousands of people ”. “The reopening in the terms indicated in the resolution will imply that the population cannot have the required health care, which is totally foreseeable under current conditions,” they write.
They also state that the index “has notorious technical scientific flaws” such as that “it has no published scientific evidence, nor precedents in any country in the world”, “it presents inconsistencies in the conceptual approach and there are no references that support it”, “the variable of vaccination coverage does not exceed 10 percent in any territory “and” the capacity of ICU and intermediate is a static indicator that does not objectively reflect the real state of occupation. “
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“The Irem does not include social aspects such as unemployment, poverty, misery, food security, the response from public health to social behaviors, mental health and quality of care and the issuance of resolution 777 in this At the moment it sends the wrong message to society because it induces communities to fail to comply with self-care and biosecurity measures, which would lead to an increase in cases and mortality in the coming weeks, ”the statement states.
In their writing, the 140 organizations show what is happening in Colombia in the midst of the worst moment of the pandemic. For example, they warn that emergency services face an overcrowding that ranges between 200 and 300 percent in the main cities of the country and human talent is insufficient to cover the expansion needs of the areas of emergency care, hospitalization and UCI.
“Nor are specialized professionals available to meet the care needs of critical patients, a situation that affects quality, timeliness and safety indicators. The limitation of resources has made it necessary to implement prioritization guidelines for admission to ICUs in some institutions, which may increase avoidable mortality not only related to complications of covid-19 and other neglected diseases in the last year ”, they indicate .
And, specifically, regarding human talent in health, they state that more than 40 percent present alarming levels of exhaustion, anxiety, depression and physical, emotional and mental stress. Read the document below.
In a section of the text, the signatories summon the Ministry of Health to a meeting, “no later than June 9 at 9 in the morning”, in which the approaches are deepened and “viable alternatives with other social sectors are built , economic and business to find outlets that allow us to advance as a country “.
(See: Average daily doses is above 250,000 for the first time)
In addition, they point out that as actors of the health system, the scientific, academic, union and other organizations, “we demand to participate in the formulation of public health policy in general, and in a special way, to resolve the critical current situation due to the pandemic. ; participate in the revision of the Municipal Resilience Index instrument (Irem) and in the creation of a body for deliberation, oversight, monitoring and technical evaluation of these policies; as well as creating a surveillance and monitoring system for Prass, which is being implemented, with low efficiency, as well as in the design of strategies that allow accelerating vaccination and achieving herd immunity in the shortest possible time, reducing the impact from the pandemic and reactivate the economy safely ”.
To do this, they assure that intensive tracking should be strengthened and significantly increased, with early detection of cases and contacts, massively applied tests and promote preventive isolation, according to the epidemiological behavior of the territories and make it essential to generate a support strategy economic for the most socioeconomically vulnerable population, in order to guarantee compliance with isolation measures without detriment to their condition.
So far there is no known response from the Ministry of Health to this statement.