Ten patients a day receive chemotherapy during the quarantine

Ciudad Bolivar's Oncology Clinic still treats 10 patients a day during quarantine, despite a humanitarian crisis, and the Coronavirus outbreak.

This health-center attends patients from all over the south and east of the country.

Medical workers from the Virgen del Valle Oncology Clinic in Ciudad Bolívar continues to the chemotherapy service to the 200 patients in the health center during the quarantine, with a prevention system to avoid coronavirus infection.

The head of the center, Alberto Cabello, explained that they organized the oncology patients so that only 10 people can be attending a day to receive the chemotherapy, maintaining social distance, and requiring the use of masks and gloves.

“For now, the medical appointment has been suspending, we are only doing chemotherapy, and the patients are organized to come, and make their treatment. They must be without relatives to avoid infections” Cabello said.

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Due to the severe gasoline rationing, patients must take some measures to arrive at the chemo sessions. They need that doctors make them medical reports to request permission from authorities to buy gasoline, and move around town either in cars or public transport.

The Virgen del Valle Oncology Clinic is the only fully active center in the southeast of Venezuela and receives patients from other states like Anzoategui, Monagas, and Sucre.

Gasoline crisis

“I live in Upata, and I have to come to Ciudad Bolívar to receive my chemo, they gave me a pass that allows me to move and pass through the checkpoints, but it doesn’t help me to get gasoline. My son must buy it in the black market,” explained Ibis Martínez, an oncology patient. The distance between cities is 170 km.

In the state of Bolivar, the authorities suspended the supply of gasoline, only those who have priority, meaning police, militaries and health-care workers, but Medical Association in the state said, a week ago, that they are not attending at the service stations.

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