Health 14:05 20/05/2020 Armenia

Hundreds of healthcare workers infected with coronavirus in Armenia, Ministry of Health says

The number of frontline healthcare workers fighting against the novel coronavirus in Armenia will multiply in a few days.

Minister of Health Arsen Torosyan on Tuesday addressed medical workers of urban polyclinics, rural outpatient clinics and medical centers, informing that hundreds of citizens will return home in a few days with positive coronavirus test results.

The minister spoke about online trainings for health workers and the establishment of a call center, but did not say a word about providing them with proper personal protective equipment. Whereas, it is a crucial issue to be protected against the infection and to prevent its spread. In the near future polyclinics and outpatient clinics are likely to become sources of infection if they are not protected properly.

He also warned of the widespread COVID-19 cases among medical workers in case when they were provided with appropriate uniforms, goggles and gloves.

In response to a written inquiry by Panorama.am, the Ministry of Health reported that as of 3 May 320 healthcare workers had contracted coronavirus. On May 3, there were 2,386 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the country.

The ministry did not specify at which medical facilities the infected doctors and nurses work, only saying that they are employees of both Yerevan and a number of regional medical centers.

"Some of them have already recovered and have been discharged from hospital, while the others are in a satisfactory condition," the ministry's response reads.

As many as 14 employees of the National Center for Disease Control and Prevention of the Ministry of Health had tested positive for COVID-19. We wondered how the disease was transmitted and whether they were not adequately protected.

"Given the mechanism of the spread of coronavirus, unfortunately, no one is guarded against the disease, and the employees of the National Center for Disease Control and Prevention who continue to serve on the frontline have not remained unaffected, too,” the ministry said.

“However, we would like to note that while on duty they were provided with all the necessary protective equipment. Moreover, most of the employees of the center have already recovered and returned to work.”

The ministry did not answer the question about what additional measures have been taken to make the work of the center’s employees safer after the latter contracted the virus.

The health authorities also said that in March medical workers received a bonus, without specifying its amount.

To note, he inquiry was submitted on April 2, while the response was received this morning, nearly a month later. All the questions were given approximate and incomplete answers. Moreover, several questions were grouped and answered in a few words. 




 



Source Panorama.am
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