Health Workers: WHO (World Health Organization) has revealed that as many as one lakh health workers lost their lives in the last 18 months due to COVID-19 pandemic. It happened mainly due to the systematic lack of safeguards.
After a thorough review, both WHO and International Labour Organization (ILO) came to the conclusion that it was due to coronavirus crisis that led to an additional heavy toll on them across the globe.
“Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, the health sector was among the most hazardous sectors to work in,” said WHO’s Maria Neira, Director, Department of Environment, Climate Change and Health.
Covid News: Health Workers Had to GO Through Physical Injury & Burnout
Dr. Neira added, “Only a few healthcare facilities had programs in place for managing health and safety at work,” she stated.
She continued further stating, “Health workers suffered from infections, musculoskeletal disorders and injuries, workplace violence and harassment, burnout, and allergies from the poor working environment.” she said.
And this is what the agencies like WHO and LO observed, “Such programs should cover all occupational hazards – infectious, ergonomic, physical, chemical, and psycho-social,” it revealed.
Rights of Health Workers
The agencies noted that like all other workers, they too should be allowed to work in a safe zone environment.
But in the COVID-19 crisis, it didn’t happen. And due to this, it cost their lives who fought day and night for the benefit of their patients.
The analysis showed that one out of three health institutions lacked proper hygiene facilities.
“Sickness absence and exhaustion exacerbated pre-existing shortages of health workers and undermined the capacities of health systems to respond to the increased demand for care and prevention during the crisis,” said James Campbell, Director, WHO Health Workforce Department.