June 18, 2024
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Group of Peruvian medics on hunger strike amid growing second wave of Covid-19 cases 

A group of Peruvian medics went on hunger strike Tuesday demanding more investment in the health sector and rejecting the country’s handling of the pandemic amid rising cases of Covid-19, according to a statement from Peru’s Social Security National Medical Union (SINAMMSOP) published Wednesday.

About a dozen medics from the national social security union have been protesting outside Peru’s Ministry of Labor, where the group began the hunger strike on Tuesday.

Fiorella Molinelli, the president of Peru’s Health Social Security, has not commented on SINAMMSOP’s demands as of Thursday. She is currently leading government efforts to adapt temporary health and isolation Covid-19 centers to combat the spread of the virus.

The hunger strike comes in addition to numerous protests in different parts of the country since last week, where medics and other health workers are demanding more medical equipment, adjusted salaries and an “increase in the budget for the health sector,” according to the Peruvian Medical Federation.

“Our ICUs are collapsing and we are not receiving any response and we are seeing the indifference of a government that assigns us the budget. We urgently need to acquire this equipment to prevent more Peruvians from dying. The Peruvian state has a constitutional obligation to guarantee the accessibility of health services and right now they are denying access to hospitals because we no longer have the capacity to provide patients with what they need so much,” Peruvian nurse Ketty Solier told Reuters Tuesday.

Second wave: Peru is now facing a second wave of Covid-19 cases, according to the country’s Health Minister Pilar Mazzetti.

“We are starting on a second wave (of Covid-19 cases). This wave is rising. I can tell you that we’ve made some calculations and we are more or less right were we were in mid-April, and the figures keep ascending,” Mazzetti said during an interview with local media Monday.

Peru has reported at least 1,073,214 Covid-19 cases, including 39,044 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data.