1-20 | The health system in Manaus, the capital of the Brazilian state of Amazonas, has collapsed for the second time. Although the hospitals have been adding COVID-19 bed capacity at an astonishing rate, the numbers of new patients have continued to grow even faster, meaning the entire health system is saturated and overloaded. More seriously, the city’s capacity to produce oxygen is running at less than a third of the current needs, leaving some hospitals unable to ventilate patients and reportedly resulting in people dying of asphyxiation.
1-19 | As of December 2020, there are over 450,000 cases of COVID-19 in the Philippines – nearly half of which have been detected in the densely populated region of Metro Manila.Densely populated communities Protecting people from the COVID-19 pandemic is especially challenging in Manila. Allen Borja, an Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) nurse in the MSF project in Tondo, Manila, describes his visits to the slums.
1-19 | San Lazaro Hospital (SLH) is a Special National Hospital Medical Centre for Infectious Diseases in Manila, Philippines. It is where the first case of COVID-19 in the country was confirmed and treated.MSF boosted SLH’s COVID-19 testing, data management, and COVID-19 case management through the support of additional healthcare workers, biomedical equipment, medicines, medical supplies, personal protective equipment, training for infection prevention and control, and some infrastructure improvements.
12-28 | Some communities in Hebron ‘Area C’ face challenges accessing basic healthcare due to administrative restrictions and lack of transportation. Women are particularly affected. More than half of the West Bank is under Area C designation, meaning it is under direct Israeli civil and military control, which among other things translates into barriers to access healthcare for the approximately 300,000 Palestinians that live in small dispersed communities.
12-18 | The year-long COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped the life of every individual with varying degrees of disruption. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) in Hong Kong has been particularly concerned about people’s mental wellbeing after prolonged exposure to uncertainty, especially amongst vulnerable groups who might have difficulty in seeking help. A survey conducted jointly by MSF and the local organisation Uplifters, shows that 72% of the foreign domestic helpers who responded have experienced depression-related symptoms. 47% in the survey sought help from their fellow workers in Hong Kong.