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Government attributes COVID-19 deaths in Mexico to multiple factors

Deaths from COVID-19 in Mexico are explained by factors such as inequality, poor nutrition, limited health capacity and corruption, said Mexico’s Undersecretary of Prevention and Health Promotion, Hugo López-Gatell.

“The mortality profile of a country depends a lot on its social reality and 40 years of history of the construction of inequality are involved in it,” said López-Gatell, head of the fight against the pandemic.

Mexico reached 60,480 deaths this Sunday from COVID, a statistic that exceeded the 60,000 deaths that the Mexican government considered in the “very catastrophic scenario” just last June.

López-Gatell said that deaths in Mexico have multiple factors, such as the health profile of the population affected by chronic diseases associated with poor nutrition, such as smoking, obesity, hypertension and diabetes.

He stated that for the past 15 years in the country, half of the annual mortality, about 350,000 deaths, are associated with poor nutrition.

Likewise, Mexico is a deeply unequal country and half of its population lives every day, in conditions of poverty,

The expert noted among the factors the deprivation of services, as occurs with health, which in the last 40 years did not grow and currently there is a deficit of 240,000 health professionals, mainly in rural areas.

Within this panorama, “it would not be unreasonable to remember that corruption was very present in the deterioration of health services,” said López-Gatell.

As an example of this, he recalled that in the previous government (2012-2018) 307 hospitals were left without building for various reasons, among which were contracts that benefited many people without obtaining a benefit for the health of the population.

In the weeks prior to the declaration of the pandemic, the Mexican government had to rehabilitate fifty hospitals to cope with the health emergency, at an “incomparably lower” cost.

The person in charge of the fight against the pandemic said that the Mexican government has done “everything that is at our disposal” to take and apply the measures that are technically appropriate to mitigate an epidemic, to contain transmission chains, to ensure timely attention in a deeply unequal country.

Mexico reached 560,164 cases this Sunday and 60,480 deaths by adding the 3,948 infections and 264 deaths that were reported in the last 24 hours to the Ministry of Health.