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Nurses in Sudan demand protection against Covid-19

May 14 - 2020 KHARTOUM / SENNAR / EL GEDAREF

Sudanese nurses threaten with an open-ended strike if their demands for protective equipment are not met. At least 157 new cases of Covid-19 were registered on Wednesday. In El Gedaref, an activist was detained when he was explaining the dangers of the coronavirus pandemic to a group of youngs people.

Radio Dabanga reported last week that the Covid-19 pandemic is stressing Sudan’s health system. Medics are complaining about a severe shortage of Personal Protection Equipment (PPEs).

The Sudanese Nursing Association has set a deadline for the provision of PPEs. If the required protection equipment has not been provided by Thursday, they will embark on strike.

Nurses in 30 hospitals in Khartoum and the states laid down their tools on Monday for a period of 24 hours, in protest against the severe shortage of PPEs.

According to the Association at least 25 nurses have been infected with Covid-19. About 300 others are in quarantine due to their contact with coronavirus cases.

In a statement on Wednesday, the nurses call for the provision of PPEs and better isolation opportunities in the hospitals for suspected cases, including nurses who have been in contact with infected patients.

Health institutions must be compelled to notify its nursing staff of suspected cases of coronavirus before they are tasked to deal with them. The nurses furthermore demand transportation between their homes and the hospitals they are working in.

New cases

In a statement early this morning, the Directorate General of Emergency and Epidemic Control of the Sudanese Ministry of Health announced that 157 new cases of Covid-19 were registered on Wednesday.

In Khartoum, 120 new cases were registered, in addition to 22 in El Gezira, six in Sennar, five in North Kordofan, and two each in El Gedaref and in South Darfur.

The total of recorded coronavirus patients in the country since mid-March is 1,818. At least 90 people have died. 198 patients recovered.

On Wednesday, the government of Sennar ordered the closure of shops and markets as from Friday. The re-opening of the shops depends on improvement of the health conditions, the authorities stated.

During the past few days, Sennar witnessed a significant increase in the number of coronavirus cases. By Wednesday, the 49th case was registered. Most of the patients are medical staff members.

Mohamed Burri in El Gedaref (Social media)

Last month, Radio Dabanga published an op-ed by Cameron Hudson, who stated that “given the almost total lack of testing and near-absent health care system, that figure [of confirmed cases in Sudan] is most assuredly grossly underestimated”.

Detained

On Tuesday, the authorities of Gala El Nahal locality in eastern Sudan’s El Gedaref detained Mohamed Burri, while he was conducting an awareness-raising campaign concerning the coronavirus pandemic among a group of youth.

Activists told Radio Dabanga that Burri has not been charged. He should be released immediately or brought to a fair trial.

 


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