“The main challenge today is to help patients in severe and critical conditions,” says Francesco Segoni, MSF’s Emergency Coordinator in Peru. “There are almost no beds available in intensive care units, and they are often occupied for long periods by severe COVID-19 patients.”
“These two elements combine to create a bottleneck,” says Segoni. “Oxygen supplies are insufficient, and a major concern is that the vaccination rate is still very low, leaving people exposed and the healthcare system under pressure.”
On 31 May 2021 the Peruvian Ministry of Heath announced a revised number of deaths from COVID-19 since the beginning of the outbreak, following the indications of a Government task force that worked for weeks to review the calculation. The total number of deaths from the disease now stands at over 180,000 people, which is two and a half times higher than the previous count (69,300). Peru now has the world’s highest number of COVID-19 deaths per million people, and the fifth highest number of deaths in absolute terms.
As of today, only 11 per cent of Peruvians have received the first dose of a vaccine and less than four per cent of people are fully vaccinated.