From the FORA health workers:
First of all, we need to be aware that, in Argentina, Coronavirus is not the only pandemic we’re going through: the number of cases of dengue have tripled since 2019 and there is an ongoing outbreak of measles. Hospitals are not coping. Leaves of absence and vacations have been suspended for health workers because of the pandemic. We are doing what we can with the means we have, but we’re not getting enough supplies and the building conditions in many provincial hospitals are not good enough to fight the disease off. That is why we’re asking you to consider it very carefully before attending the ER service. Only the people help the people!.
As Health workers, based on our experiences in hospitals, we recommend the following:
- Don’t go to ER unless it’s an emergency. This would only contribute to the collapse of the service, wasting time dealing with cases that are not critical and taking time away from the real emergencies. These happen when: a health condition appears suddenly, requiring immediate treatment or attention and involving a high probability of loss of life. By contrast, an urgent case is when: a health condition appears suddenly but it is not life-threatening and may require medical attention within a reasonable period of time (within 2 or 3 hours).
- If you think that you may be infected, watch out for these symptoms: fever, cough, sore throat, difficulty breathing and the MOST IMPORTANT element before running a test, whether you have been in contact with a confirmed case of Coronavirus or you have travelled in the last 14 days to the countries with transmission of Coronavirus (China, Italy, South Korea, Iran, among others).
- Masks are ONLY required by confirmed infected persons who must be isolated in quarantine.
- It is important that you wash your hands when arriving from the street or before eating. When coughing or sneezing, cover your mouth with your elbow.
- Devote time to helping people at risk, such as adults over 65, individuals with an already compromised immune system or insulin-requiring diabetics. If you have a neighbour or family member in this group, help them to get out of the house as little as possible. You can do their shopping for them, among other things, so they don’t expose themselves. Anyone who has been to the countries mentioned above, even if they don’t have any symptoms, should get out as little as possible to avoid contact. At the same time, let’s not panic! Avoid spreading media disinformation or through social media.
As workers, we demand from the bosses and the State:
For workers with a legal contract: paid leave and quarantine.
For workers in the underground economy: the State must force the employers to legally contract the workers and then apply our previous demand. Otherwise, it must pay compensation to the workers. Then, quarantine.
For single-tax workers: reprieve of tax payments, economic compensation from the State and quarantine.
For self-employed workers: economic compensation from the State and quarantine.
For health workers: guarantee transportation and health supplies to fight the pandemic off.
Do not waste our money subsidising our bosses! Give it back to us to support our families!
Health Workers of the Sociedad de Resistencia Oficios Varios Lomas de Zamora
A section of FORA (Federación Obrera Regional Argentina) – ICL
Also available in: Español (Spanish)