Peru's social security system announced the construction of a new hospital to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic in the Amazon region, where health services operate at the limit of their capacity.
"EsSalud (Social Health Insurance) will install a fast-building hospital in Ucayali to serve Covid-19 patients," the government entity said in a statement.
The authorities foresee that the hospital may be working within three weeks in Pucallpa, capital of the Ucayali region, bordering Brazil, with 390,000 inhabitants.
The cases of the new coronavirus exceed 1,620 there and the numbers are increasing.
The hospital will have a hundred beds, 20 of them in the intensive care unit. A total of 220 medical professionals will also be assigned to reinforce another hospital in that city.
"We have been working intensively to expand the offer of services and provide hospitals in the Peruvian Amazon with all the necessary means to care for patients with COVID-19," said social security spokesman Federico Tong Hurtado.
The authorities want to prevent the situation in the neighboring Amazonian city of Iquitos from repeating in Pucallpa, where hospitals are saturated with patients with COVID-19 and the morgues are unable to cope.
For this reason, Prime Minister Gustavo Zeballos announced the commitment to "acquire two oxygen plants and establish an air and land bridge to provide the necessary oxygen balloons" for Pucallpa.
In Iquitos, on the other hand, in the Amazon region of Loreto, an oxygen plant will start operating on Monday, in a new and small hospital, which will supply up to 40 beds.
Loreto, on the border with Brazil, Colombia and Ecuador, is the largest and least populated region in Peru, but one of the most affected by the coronavirus in Peru.
More than 2,250 cases of COVID-19 and 95 deaths have been reported there, according to official figures.
The lack of oxygen in hospitals for patients with COVID-19, a respiratory disease, is one of the biggest problems in the health system in this area.
"The lung of the world dies from lack of oxygen and that is our sad reality"he said Thursday to the AFP In a video call, the director of Health of the Amazon region of Loreto, Carlos Calampa.
In Iquitos, the vicarage organized a public collection to acquire another oxygen plant.
In the Peruvian jungle there are practically no roads and the main means of transportation is by river, which mobilized the government to establish air bridges to deliver health aid.
With information from AFP
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