WHO says ‘at least’ 115,000 health workers have now died from Covid-19

At least 115,000 health and care workers have died today from Covid-19 worldwide, according to updated figures from the World Health Organization.

WHO director-general Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus gave the estimate in his opening statement at the World Health Assembly this week, in which he also pointed out the shortcomings in reporting deaths.

“About 115,000 deaths are the equivalent of a commercial airliner crashing with no survivors every day for the past 17 months”

Howard Catton

“For almost 18 months, health and care workers around the world have committed life and death,” he said.

“They saved countless lives, and fought for others that even with their best efforts, disappeared.

“Many are themselves covered, and while there is little reporting, we estimate that at least 115,000 health and care workers are paying the high price for the services of others.”

The International Council of Nurses described the deaths as a “disgrace”.

“We will not seek to lessen our shock and anger to learn that at least 115,000 of our colleagues and friends have made the ultimate sacrifice,” said Howard Catton, chief executive of ICN.

About 115,000 deaths are the same as a commercial airliner crashing with no survivors on a daily basis in the past 17 months since the pandemic began. It’s a shame. ”

Howard Catton

ICN has long failed to lack accurate data on nurse deaths.

In October last year, Mr. Catton said 1,500 nurses in 44 countries had died from Covid-19, the same number of nurses who died in World War I.

At the time he said it was impossible to know for sure how many died in all countries of the world because there was no standardized data collection mechanism for nurse infections and deaths, despite lobbying. from ICN.

In April 2020, the WHO said Watch Hours that it is difficult to know the true number for health workers who die because when countries report cases, they do not always answer the relevant question of whether there is a health worker.

Mr Catton said the latest WHO update was further evidence that collecting data during the pandemic in relation to nurse deaths was “insufficient”.

“Dr Tedros’ sad confirmation that at least 115,000 healthcare workers have died as a result of Covid-19 backs-up is what the ICN has been saying since the start of the pandemic, which is reporting on nurse deaths and other healthcare staff and infection rates are inadequate and represent a catastrophic failure to take their safety seriously, ”he said.

“It is also a sign of a serious lack of investment in healthcare and a lack of priority for our nurses and other healthcare workers.”

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