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  • A patient is transferred to the adult emergency department, which has already collapsed due to the increase in cases from COVID-19, in Santiago, Chile, May 24, 2020.

    A patient is transferred to the adult emergency department, which has already collapsed due to the increase in cases from COVID-19, in Santiago, Chile, May 24, 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 27 May 2020
Opinion

To date, 74,000 people have been infected, 761 have died, and 97% of intensive care beds have been occupied.

The head of intensive care at a hospital in Santiago, Chile, Claudia Vega, warned Tuesday about the collapse of the health system in the capital, where there are no beds or ventilators available for critical patients.

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"Today we must evaluate which bed is vacant to choose the right person, the one with the best chance of survival," Hospital El Carmen head of the Intensive Care Unit Claudia Vega revealed. 

Chile's scenario in the face of the pandemic is bleak. To date, 74,000 people have been infected, 761 have died, and 97% of intensive care beds have been occupied.

"In some hospitals there are very stressful situations, where the beds are used to their maximum capacity," Interior Minister Gonzalo Blumel acknowledged. 

According to Ministry of Health authorities, it has been decided to integrate the entire public and private hospital network as one large hospital. In this way, equipment or patients can be moved from one place to another, and forces can be distributed.

The sustained spread of the virus continued to set worrying records last Sunday in Chile, when 3,709 new cases were recorded and 45 people died in the last 24 hours. 

Santiago has 8 million inhabitants and is under absolute quarantine for the second week in a row.

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