Support is arriving in Romania under EU Civil Protection Mechanism, as country struggles with fourth wave of Covid-19 pandemic.
With only 6 million having received the Covid vaccine out of its population
of 19 million, Romania last week reported the highest Covid-related mortality
rate in the world per 1 million inhabitants. The country is facing the most
dramatic period since the pandemic began, with its healthcare system under
enormous pressure. The president of the College of Physicians, professor Daniel
"We have a high number of infections, a high number of patients in
intensive care, a much higher number than we can treat, and, what's most
painful, a very high number of avoidable deaths. These deaths should not have
happened, as over 92% of them are among unvaccinated people. Vaccination should
have prevented these deaths. How did it come to this? Because of lack of
vaccination, the lack of trust in our message, in what doctors say. And I must
sadly admit that some doctors are also to blame for this situation."
The president of the College of Physicians says people should have the
right to fair information, and he is proposing that doctors who are voicing unscientific
opinions in public and thus endanger public health should be penalised. Many are
blaming people's reluctance to get the vaccine on the lack of trust in the
authorities, as well as misinformation. Given the failure of the mass
vaccination campaign and the rising number of new infections, the World Health
Organisation itself decided to send a delegation to Romania.
To cope with the fourth wave of the pandemic, Bucharest requested support
under the EU Civil Protection Mechanism, and it is beginning to arrive.
European Commission spokesman Balazs Ujvari said Poland
sent 50 oxygen concentrators, Italy sent 5,200 vials of monoclonal antibodies
and Denmark sent 15 ventilators and 8 oxygen concentrators. The EU has also provided
200 oxygen concentrators out of its own rescEU stock in The Netherlands. Ujvari
said that the EU can facilitate the provision of human resources, as well,
consisting of teams of doctors like those sent by Romania to Italy in the early
days of the pandemic. There is also a possibility that Romania can transfer
some of its patients to hospitals in other EU countries.
In Bucharest, state secretary Raed Arafat also
announced that Germany will send 12,000 doses of monoclonal antibodies. Two hospitals
from Hungary have already begun to treat patients from Romania, and from
Monday, doctors and nurses from the Republic of Moldova will help the staff of
a mobile medical unit near Iași, in the north-east. (CM)