Report: Better Handling Of Mexican Pandemic Could Have Saved Tens Of Thousands Of Lives

Published: Tuesday, April 13, 2021 - 5:47pm
Updated: Wednesday, April 14, 2021 - 7:38am

A new report finds that the pandemic toll in Mexico is among the highest in the world, due in part to how it’s been handled.

In 2020, there were roughly 43% more deaths in Mexico than data from previous years show could have been expected, one of the highest excess mortality figures in the world. It’s also far above the 17% global average the researchers found.

“We estimate that if Mexico had performed as the average in the pandemic, around 190,000 deaths from all causes would have been avoided in 2020,” the report, which was commissioned by the World Health Organization Independent Panel for Pandemic Preparedness and Response, reads.

“Data show that Mexico failed in its response to the pandemic relative to comparable countries,” it goes on to say.

“I think the most important policy mistake in the response to the pandemic in Mexico was the concentration of responsibility over the pandemic response within a single area of government,” said Mariano Sánchez-Talanquer, of Harvard and the Colegio de México. “Within the ministry of health that was politically subordinated to the executive.”

This “original sin,” as he characterized it, has been a factor in many other policy mistakes because officials in charge have not been protected from political interference,

Among the many policies criticized in the report are unclear and contradictory public messaging about the pandemic and protective measures to take against it, a very limited testing regime, and limited financial support to help the country’s people weather the economic fallout and be able to observe stay at home orders.

You can read the full report here

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