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News > Mexico

Inequality Increases Mortality From COVID-19 in Mexico

  • Hugo Lopez-Gatell at the National Palace, Mexico City, Mexico, July 7, 2020.

    Hugo Lopez-Gatell at the National Palace, Mexico City, Mexico, July 7, 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 24 August 2020
Opinion

The country's health services have not received a major upgrade since the 1980s.

Mexico's Undersecretary for Health Prevention and Promotion Hugo Lopez-Gatell said that high mortality from COVID-19 is explained by such factors as social inequality, poor nutrition, limited health capacity, and corruption.

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"The mortality rate of a country depends a lot on its social reality, and our society's structural inequality has grown exponentially over the past 40 years,” Lopez-Gatell said.

He also indicated that deaths are also related to the health profile of the population affected by chronic diseases associated with poor nutrition, smoking, obesity, hypertension and diabetes.

The official also pointed out that the health services have not received a major upgrade since the 1980s and there is a deficit of 240,000 health professionals mainly in rural areas.

"It would not be unreasonable to remember that corruption was very present in the deterioration of our health infrastructure," Lopez-Gatell explained.

In the Enrique Peña Nieto administration (2012-2018), at least 307 hospitals were not built for different reasons, among which were problems in contracts and corruption.

Lopez-Gatell also said that the government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) has done a major effort to apply measures to mitigate the epidemic, contain chains of transmission, and ensure timely care.

As of Monday morning, Mexico had reported 560,164 COVID-19 cases and 60,164 deaths.

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