Erik Labroo Current Events in Chile

The current event that I chose to read up on was in regard to COVID-19 and its impact in Chile. One article that I read was titled “Death brings assault on health care workers in Chile”. At first, one may believe that it is assault in a figurative sense regarding the intense stress put on health care workers due to the virus, but in actuality, it was a literal assault on a nurse. Between 12 and 18 people entered the hospital and broke furniture, a computer, and other property while also throwing water and verbally attacking the staff. This was because the family wanted to have a funeral for their father who passed away due to the coronavirus but were not allowed to because protocol. Eventually, the family was allowed to say goodbye, but even this was outside of the hospital’s set of rules.
The family also stated that they did not believe in COVID-19, which is an explanation for the intensity of their actions. Dr. Mauricio Munoz talks about the difficulty that health care workers must go through. Chile has seen more than 4,000 daily cases. He mentions that with the increasing number of people who test positive, the cases become more and more complex which leads to loss.
There has also been protests for more security. While the government has denounced violence against health care workers, there is still a push more policing at health facilities. The point was also made that health care workers are already at risk by exposing themselves to the virus, and that the attacks are just another issue to worry about. A nurse even commented that some of her colleagues are on stress leave and even medication because of the pandemic and hostility they face.
In even more recent news, Santiago (where UFT is located) has gone into a lockdown because of the high number of cases. While I received most of the information by talking to professors in class, I also read an article titled “Chile Locks Down Santiago With Cases Near Pandemic Worst”. The article mostly talks about how despite the fact that most of Chile’s population has been vaccinated, there are still a large number of cases. Furthermore, the article did not mention anything about the stressful environment that healthcare workers are put into because of the pandemic.
It makes me wonder that Chile may be seeing a large increase in the number of cases because of people that do not believe in the virus, like the family aforementioned. I have not read any article or heard anything that Chileans share the “anti-vax” mentality that some Americans have, so I wonder if the virus is spreading simply because of people who refuse to take it seriously. Furthermore, there may be those that have gained overconfidence in the idea that Chile is one of the world leaders when it comes to percentage of citizens vaccinated. It is always interesting to learn from other countries, and apply the lessons they’ve learned to life at home.

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