Experts call on UN to declare full-scale emergency response in Venezuela

The collapse of health systems and food shortage across Venezuela has created a complex humanitarian disaster which requires a full-scale response by the United Nations secretary-general, researchers from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Human Rights Watch said in a report.

In their report, the researchers reported increased numbers of maternal and infant deaths; the unchecked spread of vaccine-preventable diseases, such as measles and diphtheria; and sharp increases in the transmission of infectious diseases such as malaria and tuberculosis in Venezuela.

The authorities are trying hard to suppress information about the scale and urgency of the problems.

“No matter how hard they try, Venezuelan authorities cannot hide the reality on the ground,” said Shannon Doocy, Ph.D., associate professor of International Health at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

“Venezuela’s health system is in utter collapse, which, combined with widespread food shortages, is piling suffering upon suffering and putting even more Venezuelans at risk. We need UN leadership to help end this severe crisis and save lives.”

A leaked UN report had recently estimated that about 7 million people required support in the South American country.

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