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More than 40 Health workers in Nicaragua have died from covid-19 according to medical associations

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  • More than 40 Health workers in Nicaragua have died from covid-19 according to medical associations


    More than 40 Health workers have died from covid-19
    Doctors, nurses and health personnel in hospitals and clinics have been infected, according to Medical Associations: the Government continues to be silent
    Ivette Munguía
    June 5, 2020

    The number of Health personnel affected by covid-19 continues to grow in Nicaragua, adding already dozens of doctors who died from the new coronavirus, including doctors, nurses and workers from different areas of public and private hospitals, without the Government saying a single word about. The state silence contrasts with a list of different medical organizations that on May 5 record the death of 41 Health workers.

    The unofficial report reflects that the hospitals where the most Health workers have died are: Manolo Molares, from Managua; Humberto Alvarado, in Masaya and César Amador Molina, in Matagalpa. However, the statistics of the Minsa do not have disaggregated information on the contagions in the Health personnel and only admits a total of 1,118 confirmed cases of covid-19 and 46 deaths, since the first case in the country was confirmed, last 18 of March.

    On the other hand, the latest report from the independent Citizen Observatory COVID-19 reports 4,217 infected people and 980 deaths due to the pandemic in Nicaragua. Data from the Observatory, made up of a network of doctors and volunteer collaborators from all over Nicaragua, indicate that Managua is the department with the most cases of covid-19, with 1706; followed by Masaya with 355; Matagalpa with 274; León with 220, Chinandega with 182; and Granada with 110, while the rest of the municipalities did not reach 100 cases.

    The reason why the Ministry is not reporting the number of health workers infected by covid-19, is that they are "sensitive cases" that put hospitals in a "critical" situation, said days ago the pulmonologist Jorge Iván Miranda , in an interview on the program Esta Semana. The concealment of these cases “speaks very badly of them” because if the Health personnel are infected they have to remove it and “since there is no one to replace it with”, the Health system could become congested.

    Salvador Ortega, anesthesiologist

    After retiring, in 2016, anesthesiologist Salvador Ortega believed that he would never return to a hospital. Retired from his profession, he enjoyed his old age on a cattle farm in Camoapa, until he became another victim of covid-19, as confirmed by his son Norbert Ortega, who is a doctor based in Spain.

    Dr. Ortega and his wife, who works in a public hospital, have had a cough and fever since May 20, but they trusted that their experience in the field of medicine would be enough to treat the disease. However, the virus progressed rapidly and on May 26 the couple moved to the Antonio Lenín Fonseca Hospital. He was admitted for his serious condition and she was told that she could continue to treat at home.

    On May 28, Dr. Ortega was transferred to the Nicaraguan German Hospital, aimed at caring for patients with covid-19. In that place he was admitted to an Intensive Care Unit and five days later he died. "They took good care of him and received all the necessary attention," says Dr. Ortega's son. But "with this disease there is not much that can be done," he regrets.

    Membran Hernández, surgeon and teacher

    Among the doctors who died anonymously is the surgeon Membran Hernández, who died at the Bologna Hospital of Social Security, where he served as head of teaching. Sources close to his family explained that his death certificate indicates that the cause of death was a myocardial infarction, but they suspect that it is covid-19 because the hospital ordered to bury him expeditiously.

    Dr. Hernández was a pioneer in laparoscopic surgery in Nicaragua, "a teacher of generations in surgical knowledge, and in professional life," said the Nicaraguan Association of General Surgery, through his Facebook account.

    Hernández was director of the Manolo Morales Hospital and technical deputy director of the Military Hospital. He was also founder of the Medical Services of the Sandinista Popular Army (EPS) where he obtained the highest degree; general surgeon, specialist in Public Health, dean of laparoscopic surgery in Nicaragua.

    Carlos Cárdenas Canales, diabetologist

    Another doctor who died of covid-19 was the diabetologist Carlos Cárdenas Canales, who was admitted to the Monte España Hospital with difficulty breathing and died shortly after being admitted. Her daughter Camila Cárdenas told the La Prensa newspaper that the care at that hospital was late and that she had to "beg" to be seen.

    The 71-year-old doctor Cárdenas provided medical care in his private office in Managua and from there he treated his last patients, some of them with symptoms of covid-19, the family assures. He had an experience of more than 40 years, and was one of the founders of Sumedico, now Hospital Bolonia, and of the Social Security System in Nicaragua.

    Dr. Carlos Quant recently assured, in the Esta Semana program, that 31 of 162 Health workers at the Manolo Morales Hospital would have been infected with the coronavirus, that is, 20%. He also assured that in private hospitals there is "a high proportion of workers" who would have become ill from this same cause.