Title

Latin American healthcare systems in times of pandemic

Date of Publication

2020 12:00 AM

Security Theme

Health

Keywords

srhreports, health, COVID-19, Latin America, public healthcare systems, health inequality, vector-borne disease control, community-acquired infections, non-communicable diseases, health ethics, healthcare challenges, health underfunding, pandemic

Description

"The COVID‐ 19 pandemic is a critical test for the already overburdened and mostly underfunded public healthcare systems of Latin America. In a region that suffers from severe inequalities, public healthcare systems are the only source of medical care for a large sector of the population who work in the informal economy or are unemployed. State‐run hospitals and clinics are already overstressed by continuous demand for treatment of vector‐borne diseases and community‐acquired infections as well as high rates of non‐communicable diseases. Ideological misconceptions and denial among Latin America’s political leaders prevented timely preparations for the pandemic and added to chronic governance problems. As ethical expertise in Latin America focuses on research ethics, few hospitals in the region have functioning clinical ethics committees or clinical ethics policy, forcing healthcare personnel to make excruciating treatment decisions in an environment dominated by material scarcity and public distrust. This essay examines the emergence of COVID‐19 in Latin America and the serious challenge that it poses for Latin America's public healthcare systems."

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Jan 1st, 12:00 AM

Latin American healthcare systems in times of pandemic

"The COVID‐ 19 pandemic is a critical test for the already overburdened and mostly underfunded public healthcare systems of Latin America. In a region that suffers from severe inequalities, public healthcare systems are the only source of medical care for a large sector of the population who work in the informal economy or are unemployed. State‐run hospitals and clinics are already overstressed by continuous demand for treatment of vector‐borne diseases and community‐acquired infections as well as high rates of non‐communicable diseases. Ideological misconceptions and denial among Latin America’s political leaders prevented timely preparations for the pandemic and added to chronic governance problems. As ethical expertise in Latin America focuses on research ethics, few hospitals in the region have functioning clinical ethics committees or clinical ethics policy, forcing healthcare personnel to make excruciating treatment decisions in an environment dominated by material scarcity and public distrust. This essay examines the emergence of COVID‐19 in Latin America and the serious challenge that it poses for Latin America's public healthcare systems."