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  • President Ivan Duque (R) and his Agriculture Minister Rodolfo Zea (L) during a press conference, Bogota, Colombia, March 19, 2020.

    President Ivan Duque (R) and his Agriculture Minister Rodolfo Zea (L) during a press conference, Bogota, Colombia, March 19, 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 19 March 2020

Lawmakers propose the Colombian government facilitate local production of medical supplies.

More than 60 Colombian lawmakers and senators Thursday asked President Ivan Duque to take more forceful measures in the face of the health emergency caused by the Covid-19.

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They argued that while reconnecting water to thousands of homes is fine, Colombians need four things that the government is not doing.

Mandatory isolation is the most effective measure. However, for people to stay at home, the government must ensure that emergency call centers respond effectively to the citizens.

If this does not happen, hospitals could quickly be overwhelmed by people who want a medical review.​​​​​​​

In this regard, the lawmakers and senators stated that the country's call centers should be called to dedicate themselves exclusively to answering questions from the citizens.

At the same time, the Duque administration should hire people so that the Covid-19 tests can be applied to potential patients in their homes, which would ensure isolation.

This measure would, in turn, require that the Colombian government immediately summon the laboratories to manufacture thousands of tests.

In clinics and hospitals, medical-surgical supplies, face masks, disposable gowns, and gloves are running low.

Lawmakers and senators emphasized that these products must be made in Colombia. It makes no sense that the Executive Branch has removed tariffs on those products since other countries are not selling them in sufficient quantities.​​​​​​​

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