Chile’s health system at capacity limit: President

Chile's President Sebastian Pinera delivers speech during the inauguration of the annual National Meeting of Entrepreneurs (ENADE) in Santiago, Chile

Chilean President Sebastian Pinera said that the country’s health system is at its capacity limit due to Covid-19, amid a new wave of infections that resulted in more than 7,000 cases a day last week.

“In Chile we have been hit hard by this resurgence, by this new onslaught that has put our health system at its capacity limit,” Pinera told local media on Monday.

To face this “serious threat”, he said, the country has strengthened the public and private health system, doubled the number of critical beds available and established quarantines and other restrictions, Xinhua news agency reported.

“We all know that new variants have emerged, new mutations of the virus, many of them are more contagious and cause more health risks to our compatriots and to people around the world,” he said.

The Chilean hospital network is currently overwhelmed by the new wave of Covid-19 infections, and experts warn about health personnel fatigue and the near collapse of the critical health system.

For this reason, 97 per cent of residents of the South American country are under quarantine and the whole nation is under curfew.

In addition, starting from Monday, non-resident foreigners were banned from entering the country, with the exception of those duly authorised by the Chilean Consulate in the country of origin, under health criteria issued by health authorities.

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