The Head of Government of Mexico City, Claudia Sheinbaum, announced this Monday that an agreement has been signed with the largest oxygen company, Infra, to bring tanks home for free for those patients who can cope with the disease without hospitalization. or to allow those who were admitted to go home with the help of gas. The agreement will be extended “as long as necessary.” The Mexican Institute of Social Security, IMSS, also has a similar health strategy that is not only aimed at beneficiaries. “It is not just about leaving the tank and leaving, the company will maintain and review” this service, Sheinbaum assured after several days of shortages caused by an upturn in infections in the country’s capital.
Hundreds, perhaps thousands of citizens, have been participating in the new oxygen market for weeks, which was opened by the respiratory difficulties with which this disease occurs. Lines of people have been registered at the doors of these businesses in which they sell the tanks, not always with the appropriate measures of the trade. The federal consumer agency, Profeco, announced a few hours ago that it was suspending the service of some of these businesses because they did not comply with certain basic market rules. And finally two of them have been closed. On the 22nd, 23rd and 24th of this month, Profeco visited 31 stores and suspended sales in six located in various states. They did not accredit the variations in prices and the costs of recharging the tank as well as different failures in consumer information and billing.
A river uprooted, gain of fishermen. The oxygen businesses have seen these days of suffering an open door for a business that is not always transparent, that the urgency of the citizens could not refuse. The complaints reached Profeco, which took action on the matter. In July, the Federal Commission for Economic Competition, the country’s antitrust body, launched a market investigation because it suspected monopolistic and abusive practices.
Fighting the disease at home if the symptomatic conditions allow it is not something trivial these days in which the capital and the entire metropolitan area are exhausting income possibilities. The beds are sold out and the holidays predict spikes in subsequent hospitalizations. Although the traffic light has returned to red and with it non-essential activities have been suspended, as well as parties and mass gatherings, these guarantees to stop contagion are not always fulfilled. In difficult areas of the capital, such as Tepito and surrounding areas, alcohol is even sold, something forbidden also on some key days. “We have asked the mayors for support” to combat this, Sheinbaum said at a press conference.
Nor has immunization in the city been without controversy once the first vaccines arrived in Mexico. Asked the mayor about some indications that indicated that hospital managers that are not in the first line of combat against covid were getting vaccinated instead of doctors and nurses exposed to the virus, Sheinbaum has not denied it, he has simply indicated that there should not be nepotism in this matter and that health personnel at the forefront of the pandemic should be immunized with priority.
The head of Government has also explained that 9,512 beds are expected to be occupied in the most complex scenario that is being considered. Hospitals in the city not only serve the capital, but also people from other states, especially the State of Mexico, with whom they share the territory that turns the city of nine million into a huge mass of 22 million inhabitants. 54% of those admitted are from that state of confused borders with the city. “This is the way it should be, health is a right,” Sheinbaum said.
In the city there are 5,848 people admitted with covid-19, of which 1,793 are intubated. Public hospitals have experienced a 37% increase in the number of beds since November and 27% in those with a ventilator. 1,518 beds are still available. But the course of the infections leaves no room for optimism. Worrying peaks are still expected in the city that will be the reflection of the holidays in which, despite repeated indications from political and health officials, their guard has been lowered. The city carries out about 22,000 daily tests in hospitals and street kiosks, of which 23% are positive, something that has decreased in recent weeks.