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Colombia: The Republic of Korea supports frontline health workers in COVID-19 response

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The Korean Agency for International Cooperation and the Pan American Health Organization (WHO/PAHO) have joined forces to support the Mayor of Bogota in the fight against COVID-19. Their joint work will focus on strengthening the capacity of frontline health personnel responding to the pandemic in the city’s network of public hospitals.

During the first six months of COVID-19 in Colombia, 9 071 health workers have been infected and 64 have died, according to the National Institute of Health.

As in other countries, health workers are at high risk of mental health problems such as anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress, which have severe consequences on their overall health.

Similarly, in order to reduce health personnel’s constant exposure to the virus and minimize the risk of contagion, it is essential to strengthen safety measures such as the use, removal and disposal of protective equipment, especially for those working in intensive care units and with patients hospitalized by COVID-19.

Through their cooperation, WHO and The Republic of Korea will provide training on mental health as well as the correct use of personal protective equipment (PPE).

WHO/PAHO also recently launched a regional campaign to improve the safety of health workers in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic as WHO launched its Health Worker Safety Charter.