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Disease in Chile Is So Bad, Doctors Have Only Tough Choices—‘Who Gets the Last Bed, Last Ventilator?’

May 26, 2020 (EIRNS)—The coronavirus pandemic in Chile has become so severe, that President Sebastian Piñera announced last weekend that the healthcare system is “on the brink” of collapse. In the space of 24 hours, between May 24-25, a record 5,000 new cases were reported, bringing the nationwide total to 77,961.

Hospitals have no ability to deal with the situation, Piñera said. Two of his cabinet ministers (Public Works and Energy) are infected, in addition to one of their staff members. In the southern districts of the capital Santiago, the coronavirus epicenter, desperate citizens continue to protest the lack of food and government aid, which is being made available at a snail’s pace.

La Politica Online interviewed Dr. Claudia Vega, who runs the ICU unit at Santiago’s El Carmen Hospital. She said the situation is so desperate, there are no critical care beds or ventilators, and the only thing left is to make “tough choices,” who gets a bed, who doesn’t; who gets treatment, who doesn’t. She said, “I’m a believer, and I hope God will enlighten me on this. This is very hard, I don’t wish this on anyone.... I’m trying to help in any way I can.”

Farther north in Ecuador, the situation is likewise becoming desperate, as monetarist President Lenin Moreno has insanely started to slash the budget, lay off state-sector workers and impose other austerity measures in order to compensate for the economic decline worsened by the coronavirus pandemic. In the capital of Quito, citizens took to the streets yesterday to protest these brutal measures, and while they wore masks and tried to practice social distancing, they were repressed by police. Quito is hunkering down, expecting to be hit hard by the coronavirus soon.

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