The Basque Government participates in a health cooperation intervention against Covid-19 in Peru

14 juillet 2020

The initiative in collaboration with Doctors Without Borders shows the added value of decentralised cooperation: closer to the people and partner countries, able to articulate diverse agents and based on experiences.

On 9 July, a first health team of six people left the Basque Country (5 from Osakidetza-Basque Health Service and 1 from the Aragonese Health Service) to Peru. Eight more people will join the team in a few days. This team has direct experience in the clinical management of Covid-19 cases. In addition to the team, medical supplies were sent, consisting of respirators, non-invasive mechanical ventilation equipment, high-flow equipment, monitors, medications and personal protective equipment (PPE).

The objective of this solidarity intervention is to be able to contribute to the reduction of excess mortality and morbidity due to Covid-19 infection, especially in the Departments of San Martín and Loreto in the Amazon area of Peru.

Europe and the Basque Country have experienced firsthand the cruelty and challenge of this pandemic. The role of health professionals has been exemplary. In fact, the response to the epidemic has allowed many health professionals –among other essential sectors– to have their first experience in catastrophe medicine without leaving the Basque Country, their first “humanitarian mission at home”.

However, the pandemic has exacerbated in other societies. It is time to put that experience and available resources at the service of other populations that are experiencing a similar or more intense situation than the one we have experienced.

As of 5 July, 2020, Peru has reported 295,599 confirmed cases of Covid-19, becoming the sixth country in cases in the world; the number of deaths reported is 10,226 -this figure represents deaths in confirmed patients, excluding those of suspected Covid-19 patients, which are numerous-. Faced with this situation, Doctors Without Borders carried out a rapid evaluation in the country with the aim of detecting the places and populations with the highest morbidity and mortality. The evaluation was carried out between 12 and 27 June , in coordination with the Ministry of Health and its health network at all levels, as well as with social organizations. This initiative is a result of this evaluation. The Basque Government joins the initiative with the commitment to mobilize the knowledge of medical teams, along with equipment and materials. The Basque Government has a long cooperation relationship with this country.

The pandemic is a global phenomenon; the response must also be global.

(Photo by Ashkan Forouzani on Unsplash)

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