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Isolation wards & oxygen: preparing for COVID in Somalia

Paul Healy gives a first-hand account of the challenges responding to COVID-19 in Somalia where Trócaire provides the only healthcare to a region larger than Ireland.

We know it’s just a matter of time before the Coronavirus reaches the communities we support in Somalia.

Trócaire is the only healthcare provider in a region called Gedo in the west of the country. Gedo is slightly larger than Ireland. The people there are incredibly reliant on the healthcare services we provide.

There is a huge amount of fear in Somalia right now. The country has 15 million people but only 15 intensive care (ICU) beds. If the Coronavirus takes hold here, it will cause devastation.

The challenges are huge but we have been planning our response to this pandemic for some time now. Because we have responded to cholera outbreaks in the past, we have experience in managing disease outbreaks.


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