The Home of Christ put in the hands of the Government a battery of proposals that qualify as «criticism» for the care of the highly vulnerable population in the context of the coronavirus crisis in Chile.
For these civil society institutions, the scenario is complex, owing to the risk that the dreaded Covid-19 will affect both residential and outpatient program participants, their officials, and ultimately wreak havoc on the functioning of these entities.
The call for older adults and people with mental disabilities in poverty and exclusion at this stage from the health emergency is already a cry, bearing in mind that the focus of government has been placed in other sectors and concrete action is lacking for this segment.
The two main risks
In the Home of Christ they formed an emergency committee that conducted an analysis of the current situation, warning that two are the main risks that could «deepen the health crisis» in these spaces.
The first are the limitations in implementing Covid-19 contagion prevention recommendations with a risk-based population served in programs and with work teams, due to the problems of undersupply and price speculation that this has generated in the market of health inputs (thermometer, masks, alcohol gel, gloves, among others).
The second major risk is that both the Home of Christ and other institutions working with people of high vulnerability are disqualified from providing committed social and health services, in those programs where there is confirmation of one or more Covid-19 cases, with the corresponding activation of the protocols provided by the Ministry of Salu for the quarantine of programme participants and their work teams. In fact, in the Home of Christ alone, 60 percent of its workers play health functions.
As measures to address these contingencies, in the Home of Christ they raise the need to create an emergency fund for the recruitment of replacement personnel and strengthen home care.
They also consider as a priority the guaranteed distribution of necessary safety inputs because «not having these inputs, it puts the lives of thousands of dependent adults and the work teams of residences and hostels at risk,» they note to provisions of masks, alcohol gel, gloves, insulating suits and all those who determine health protocols.
In this context, the call to Minsal is direct in raising that «organizations such as Home of Christ, should be recognized by Cenabast (Central Supply of the National Health Services System) as collaborating institutions of the State in the provision of health services and include them in their distribution network.»
They also note that it is urgent to supplement the Government-reported «Coronavirus Covid-19 Action Plan» with the work of a National Bureau for the Protection of Particularly Vulnerable Population for public-private cross-sectoral coordination. «This coordination mechanism should be articulated with the «Social Table» established by the Government, and have a regional and territorial deployment, including the participation of: Regional Services, Intendencies and Governments, Municipalities (COE) and local networks civil society,» they say at the Foundation.
They also propose to incorporate the Armed Forces so that their troops can contribute to the operation of home programs and Street Routes programs, collaboration in the detection of people who are with symptoms of the virus, together with the transfer of cases of low complexity, in addition to enabling insulation and recovery tents, with support equipment, in the programs that are required.
Alongside the above, they propose to have community equipment (meetings of neighbors, gyms, hotels, houses, churches) for infected people who do not require hospitalization, especially cases of low complexity that have active contagion with mild to moderate symptoms.