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1 in 10 COVID patients is a health worker

World Health Organisation Director General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has made a shocking disclosure that as many 10% of the COVID affected people are health workers.

By B N Kumar

MUMBAI, July 17, 2020: Pointing out that the COVID pandemic has shown us that there is no health without health workers, World Health Organisation Director General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has made a shocking disclosure that as many 10% of the COVID affected people are health workers.

“So far, about 10% of all cases globally are among health workers” Dr Tedros said at his global media briefing yesterday.

“We all owe health workers an enormous debt – not just because they have cared for the sick. But because they have risked their own lives in the line of duty.” He said.

Many health workers are also suffering physical and psychological exhaustion after months of working in extremely stressful environments.

In this context, Dr Tedros said he was especially touched in Madrid on Thursday  by a speech given by a nurse called Aroa López. She said:

“We have given it our all. We have worked to the brink of exhaustion. And once again we have understood – maybe better than ever – why we chose this profession: to care for people and to save lives.

“We have been the messengers of the last goodbye to older people who died alone, hearing their children’s voices on the telephone. We have made video calls, we have held their hand and we have had to fight back the tears when someone said, ‘Don’t let me die alone.’”

Ms López finished her remarks with this appeal:

“I want to ask the authorities to defend everyone’s health care. To remember that there is no better tribute to those who are no longer with us than to protect our health and ensure the dignity of our professions.”

Dr Tedros said WHO has published guidance and training packages for health workers on how they can protect themselves.

“We’re also driving research to better understand the extent of infection among health workers and the risk factors for infection. We’re also shipping millions of items of protective gear around the world and ensuring health facilities are properly equipped,” he added.

 

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