- Title: 'It's Covid! Stay away!' Latin America's health workers face rising hostility
- Date: 16th April 2020
- Summary: MEXICO CITY, MEXICO (APRIL 14, 2020) (REUTERS) EXTERIOR RESPIRATORY DISEASES HOSPITAL PATIENT / RELATIVE ARRIVING AT HOSPITAL VARIOUS OF DOCTORS RECEIVING PATIENTS VARIOUS OF DOCTOR WITH PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT (PPE) MEDICAL WORKERS INSIDE HOSPITAL (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) DOCTOR CARMEN GARDUNO, SAYING: ''Our own citizens do not realise the importance; those they are attacking are the people who have the cure for this pathology and in fact not even a cure but rather those who are going to help you survive and to be discriminated upon.'' VARIOUS OF FUNERAL VAN ARRIVING AT RESPIRATORY DISEASES HOSPITAL MEDICAL WORKERS LOOKING AT MOBILE PHONE VARIOUS OF ARMY SOLDIERS GUARDING HOSPITAL MEDICAL STAFF MARCO VELAZQUEZ SHOWING HIS UNIFORM (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MEDICAL STAFF AT MEXICO'S SOCIAL SECURITY INSTITUTE, MARCO VELAZQUEZ, SAYING: ''I used to wear my uniform every day. Now I arrive dressed as a civilian. I have to bring my clothes in my backpack. It's happened at the Ethiopia metro station. Two men wanted two colleagues to get off the train.'' VARIOUS, POLICE OFFICERS OUTSIDE GENERAL HOSPITAL VARIOUS OF MEDICAL STAFF BOARDING BUS BUS LEAVING HOSPITAL MEDICAL STAFF WALKING IN STREET
- Embargoed: 30th April 2020 00:10
- Keywords: Argentina COVID-19 Chile Colombia Latin America Mexico health workers hospitals hostility novel coronavirus pandemic
- Location: MEXICO CITY, MEXICO / CALI, COLOMBIA / VENADO TUERTO, SANTA FE PROVINCE, ARGENTINA / PUERTO VARAS, LA LIGUA AND SANTIAGO, CHILE
- City: MEXICO CITY, MEXICO / CALI, COLOMBIA / VENADO TUERTO, SANTA FE PROVINCE, ARGENTINA / PUERTO VARAS, LA LIGUA AND SANTIAGO, CHILE
- Country: Mexico
- Reuters ID: LVA001C9LTQH3
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:EDITORS PLEASE NOTE THIS STORY CONTAINS WHITE FLASHES IN SHOTS 17, 19
Shoved to the ground, splashed with bleach or glared at on public transportation, health workers face a growing tide of hostility across Latin America for potentially spreading COVID-19.
Reuters spoke to over a dozen nurses and health workers with similar stories of hostility and aggression across Latin America, even as they are publicly lauded as heroes, fighting the virus with limited resources.
So far, more than 72,000 people have been infected and 3,241 people have died from the pandemic in the region.
Nurses represent 80% of the staff in Latin America's public hospitals, according to medical unions, making them indispensable in the response to the pandemic, which has infected more than 2 million people worldwide.
In Colombia's capital of Bogota, home to nearly half of the country's 2,979 people with coronavirus, Doctor Cristian Botache was kicked out from the flat he was renting by himself to protect his family from infection.
In Argentina, doctors have said can no longer use elevators or common areas at apartment buildings on orders from the building administrations, who are concerned they could infect the neighbours.
Members from Chile's Integral Network of Doctors said several colleagues have received aggressive messages and comments, including threats, even at their homes.
(Production: Josue Gonzalez, Carlos Carrillo, Manuel Carrillo, Esteban Medel, Herbert Villarraga, Horacio Soria, Juan Bustamante, Geraldine Downer)
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