Healthcare

Brazilian nurses fired for striking in Manaus over PPE

By Tomas Castanheira, 1 May 2020

Thirteen Brazilian nurses were fired after striking on Monday, along with hundreds of their colleagues at the 28 de Agosto Hospital, in the Amazonian capital of Manaus.

Remdesivir as “miracle drug”: Back-to-work propaganda vs. science

By Bryan Dyne, 1 May 2020

The media’s adulation of this “breakthrough” takes place in the midst of an increasingly frenzied effort to create the impression that the virus is “under control” and the crisis is all but over.

With over 1 million coronavirus cases and 60,000 fatalities in the US, markets eager to get back to business

By Benjamin Mateus, 29 April 2020

The markets are clamoring for a rapid reopening of businesses, regardless of concerns about the impact of a second wave of the coronavirus.

COVID-19 infection at sporting fixtures underscores criminality of Johnson government’s herd immunity policy

By Barry Mason, 29 April 2020

It was only due to growing opposition that the government was forced to impose a lockdown. But much of the damage had already been done, as evidenced by its allowing three sporting events to take place.

Coronavirus pandemic surges across South Asia, even as governments push for a return to work

By our correspondents, 29 April 2020

The response of South Asia’s governments to the pandemic underscores the contempt of the national bourgeoisie for the lives of hundreds of millions of working people and rural toilers.

Jaffna health workers complain of poor facilities as pandemic spreads in Sri Lanka

By Subash Somachandran, 29 April 2020

Health workers in northern Sri Lanka insist that the insufficiency of tests and shortcomings of health facilities has made the province vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Trump orders meatpacking plants to remain open, as coronavirus sickens thousands of workers

By Christopher Davion and Marcus Day, 29 April 2020

Trump’s executive order is aimed squarely at shielding the profits of Tyson Foods and other corporate firms, not at defending the food supply chain or the safety of workers.

Cuban working class facing disaster due to coronavirus-related tourism collapse

By Alexander Fangmann, 29 April 2020

While Cuba appears to have effectively slowed the spread of COVID-19, the collapse of tourism has left huge numbers of workers unemployed and threatens imports of needed goods.

COVID-19 cases increase across Illinois as many counties push to reopen

By Brian Brown, 29 April 2020

The pandemic poses enormous problems for rural areas where public health programs and hospitals have been greatly defunded over the last decade, leaving vulnerable residents in greater danger.

Quebec government threatens thousands of lives with precipitous return to work

By Richard Dufour, 29 April 2020

Quebec Premier François Legault has announced the reopening of the province’s elementary schools and daycares.

Australian health workers infected with COVID-19 but governments cover up full picture

By Margaret Rees, 29 April 2020

Even according to the officially-reported cases, Melbourne’s health system is one of the worst-affected in Australia.

Despite anticipating more deaths, Australian governments demand return to work

By Mike Head, 28 April 2020

The New South Wales state premier said she expected an increase in virus cases as her government lifted restrictions.

Coronavirus antibody tests lack validity and sufficient accuracy to offer reliable guarantee of immunity

By Benjamin Mateus, 28 April 2020

One of the most well-known attempts to justify sending workers back to offices and factories, based on a supposed antibody count, comes from the discredited Santa Clara study, as it has come to be known.

As mass layoffs intensify, tens of millions in US stand to lose health insurance

By Alex Johnson, 27 April 2020

An Economic Policy Institute blog reveals that some 9.2 million Americans lost their health insurance coverage over the previous four weeks due to the coronavirus pandemic.

US nursing homes: A goldmine for real estate and private equity firms

By Isaac Finn, 27 April 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has jeopardized large sections of the nursing home industry, which have become controlled by corporate operators at the expense of residents’ quality of care.

At least 130 US health care workers dead from COVID-19

By Clara Weiss, 25 April 2020

Every single one of these deaths and the vast majority of infections were preventable.

US elderly care devastated by the profit system

By Isaac Finn, 25 April 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the failure of the American health care system, and the inability of the wealthiest country on Earth to take care of its elderly and infirm.

Henry Ford Health System lays off 2,800 as COVID-19 continues to ravage Detroit

By Kevin Reed, 25 April 2020

Following Beaumont Health, which laid off 2,475 employees and permanently eliminated 450 positions on Tuesday, HFHS told workers they were being put on temporary furlough.

Tennessee state government plans to lift social-distancing measures as health care crisis looms

By Warren Duzak, 25 April 2020

While Tennessee’s Republican Governor Bill Lee claims the number of cases were leveling off, physicians have described the virus trajectory as “saw-toothed” with no real sign of flattening or subsiding.

UK: Millions of pounds donated to the National Health Service as coronavirus crisis continues

By Alice Summers, 25 April 2020

A fundraising page for the NHS, set up by 99-year-old war veteran Captain Tom Moore, received overwhelming public support, raising more than £28 million in two weeks.

Coronavirus sweeps through Russian medical facilities

By Andrea Peters, 25 April 2020

Hospitals and clinics in several cities have been placed under quarantine, as COVID-19 infects staff and patients alike.

Australia: Fifth resident dies at Sydney aged care home

By Martin Scott, 25 April 2020

Unable to visit, families fear their elderly relatives are suffering neglect.

Japan’s medical system collapsing as COVID-19 cases surge

By Ben McGrath, 24 April 2020

As many as 400,000 people could die in Japan without serious preventative measures as many lack access to tests and treatment.

South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee reopening as coronavirus deaths mount

By Matthew MacEgan, 22 April 2020

The actions amount to a death sentence for thousands of working people, and particularly the elderly.

US health care workers protest government back-to-work demands

By Trévon Austin, 22 April 2020

Nurses countrywide are opposing the government’s bank-to-work demands and insisting they be provided with proper protective gear on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Beaumont Health lays off 2,500 and eliminates 450 jobs in Metro Detroit

By Kevin Reed, 22 April 2020

Michigan’s largest health care provider, Beaumont Health, announced the layoff of 2,475 employees and the permanent elimination of 450 positions at its Detroit-area facilities.

Death toll rises at veterans hospital in Massachusetts

By Julian James, 22 April 2020

Roughly 1-in-4 COVID-19 fatalities in the entire Veterans Affairs care system have taken place at a single facility in Massachusetts.

As COVID-19 deaths pass 17,000, UK corporations scramble for bailout funds

By Robert Stevens, 22 April 2020

In what it described as a "conservative estimate", the Financial Times concluded that its analysis of official data reveals "The coronavirus pandemic has already caused as many as 41,000 deaths in the UK".

Thousands view online meeting of UK SEP outlining a socialist perspective on the pandemic

By our reporter, 22 April 2020

Around 500 viewers took part in the event with participants from Britain joined by others from Australia, Sri Lanka, Germany, France, Canada and the US—underscoring the international interest in the meeting.

US safety agencies bow to corporations as workers file record number of complaints

By Jessica Goldstein, 22 April 2020

The US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has reportedly received 3,000 complaints related to the pandemic, with state agencies receiving many times more.

India: Modi government moves to “reopen” economy as virus cases surge

By Wasantha Rupasinghe and Keith Jones, 22 April 2020

Modi and big business have cynically sought to justify their push for a premature return to work by pointing to the desperate plight of hundreds of millions of day labourers.

Kazakhstan: Hospital workers demand resignation of government official over spread of COVID-19

By David Levine, 22 April 2020

Hospital workers demanded that the city’s chief public health officer, who accused medical workers of being responsible for the spread of the virus, be removed from office.

Australia’s national cabinet continues back-to-work push

By Oscar Grenfell, 22 April 2020

State governments are moving ahead with an easing of restrictions, including through the reopening of schools, creating the conditions for major coronavirus outbreaks.

Amazon workers in Italy strike over coronavirus cover-up

Worker resistance grows internationally as governments push premature return to work

By Shannon Jones, 18 April 2020

The reckless drive by the Trump administration and governments in Europe to resume production despite health warnings will produce a social explosion.

Brazilian nurses strike over deadly conditions as COVID-19 deaths mount

By Tomas Castanheira, 18 April 2020

This week, after a rapid rise in COVID-19 cases in Brazil, protests and work stoppage spread to hospitals and other health care units.

As US deaths soar, bipartisan back-to-work drive guarantees the explosive spread of pandemic

By Benjamin Mateus, 18 April 2020

Trump and the political establishment are seeking to enforce a return to work despite the warnings of medical experts that the US is nowhere near prepared to reopen safely.

Detroit-area hospitals slash jobs and close facilities to cut costs during COVID-19 crisis

By Kevin Reed, 18 April 2020

Corporate health care providers in the Detroit area are attempting to impose financial losses associated with the health crisis onto the working class.

Nurse who exposed conditions at Massachusetts nursing home dies from COVID-19

By Andrew Timon, 18 April 2020

Maria Krier’s death is another tragic outcome of the appalling conditions in nursing homes throughout New England and the US.

Seventeen bodies found piled in a New Jersey nursing home

By Erik Schreiber, 18 April 2020

This ghastly discovery is symptomatic of the disaster unfolding at nursing homes in the state, across the US and internationally.

Florida orders National Guard to assist in nursing home COVID-19 testing

By Matthew Taylor, 18 April 2020

There has been no push for mass testing, with only 236,000 of the state’s more than 21 million residents tested to date.

UK government’s herd immunity policy denounced by leading scientist

By Robert Stevens, 18 April 2020

Boris Johnson’s Conservatives pursued a policy which envisaged the mass infection of tens of millions of people and the deaths of possibly hundreds of thousands.

Big business representatives defend hospital closures in Germany

By Markus Salzmann, 18 April 2020

Economist Boris Augurzky claims that there are too many hospitals, and has called for the crisis to be used to further reduce the number of facilities.

Ukrainian capital Kiev engulfed in smog from wildfires near Chernobyl

By Jason Melanovski and Clara Weiss, 18 April 2020

The fires expose the fact that the world’s worst nuclear catastrophe remains unresolved and continues to threaten the health of the population.

Sri Lanka: Oppose return to work in unsafe pandemic conditions! No to job destruction!

By the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka), 18 April 2020

The criminal actions of the Rajapakse government and big business will accelerate the spread of the deadly virus and lead to a further loss of workers’ lives.

Australian ruling elite seizes on pandemic to demand harsh economic restructuring

By Mike Head, 18 April 2020

Governments and big business are using the COVID-19 crisis to accelerate the decades-long assault on social spending and workers’ jobs, wages and conditions.

Authorities seeking to force coronavirus-stricken ship out of Australian waters

By Martin Scott, 18 April 2020

More than 160 Ruby Princess crew members have tested positive for COVID-19, but most of the 1,056 workers are being refused the right to leave the ship.

New Zealand businesses, media call for lifting of lockdown measures

By John Braddock, 18 April 2020

Sections of NZ’s business elite are demanding an end to the month-long COVID-19 lockdown and for working people to risk their lives to defend the capitalist economy.

US rural hospitals close amid COVID-19 pandemic

By Gary Joad, 17 April 2020

Since 2010, 128 rural hospitals have closed, with 19 closures taking place last year alone.

Coronavirus toll reaches two million worldwide, nearly 30,000 US dead

By Benjamin Mateus and Patrick Martin, 16 April 2020

Despite preparations by the Trump administration and various state government to relax anti-virus measures, the US death toll hit record levels on both Tuesday and Wednesday.

World famous Mayo Clinic cuts pay, furloughs employees amidst COVID-19 pandemic

By Matt Rigel, 16 April 2020

To date, 117 hospitals and hospital chains have imposed cuts.

“We have the technology and knowledge, but it won’t work under capitalism”

An interview with a foreign-trained doctor prevented from fighting COVID-19 in Canada

By Janet Browning, 16 April 2020

“Politicians,” said Dr. Wijesooriya, “talk endlessly about the economy, stock markets and oil price. Meanwhile, the hospitals are understaffed.”

Canada: Thousands of foreign-trained medical staff prevented from assisting in COVID-19 fight

By Janet Browning, 16 April 2020

Canada recorded its thousandth death due to COVID-19 on Wednesday, yet thousands of foreign-trained medical staff are not being mobilized in the fight against the deadly virus.

COVID-19 deaths break US record as virus spreads through every state

By Benjamin Mateus, 15 April 2020

Over 2,300 people died from COVID-19 in the United States Tuesday, in the highest recorded daily death toll of any country.

As pandemic deaths continue to rise

Trump calls on states to move quickly to reopen their economies

By Barry Grey, 15 April 2020

The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday congratulated both Trump and the Democratic governors for moving to lift the restrictions on profit-making.

COVID-19 devastating the elderly at nursing homes across the US

By Kevin Reed, 15 April 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has exploded in nursing homes and long-term care facilities, exposing the catastrophic circumstances facing large numbers of elderly working class people.

A letter from a concerned UK nurse to the WSWS

15 April 2020

“I urge employees not to be silenced by ruthless and reckless employers and to stand together and speak out.”

Deaths continue to soar as European governments step up back-to-work plans

By Alice Summers, 15 April 2020

Another 27,531 Covid-19 cases in Europe were reported Tuesday, bringing the total to nearly one million.

Greek medical workers demand funds to combat coronavirus pandemic

By John Vassilopoulos, 15 April 2020

Greece only had 560 intensive care unit beds as the pandemic began, 6 per 1 million inhabitants compared to 29.2 in Germany.

Ugandan government touts malarial drug chloroquine as a COVID-19 cure

By Stephan McCoy, 15 April 2020

Uganda’s government has taken a leaf from US President Donald Trump’s playbook in promoting the untested drug as a potential lifesaver.

Germany: Hesse politicians and employers expose workers to risk of COVID-19 infection

By Marianne Arens, 15 April 2020

Refuse workers report how they are given no protection and are expected to travel home in their dirty overalls.

North Carolina sanitation workers demand increased protection after co-worker’s death

By Matthew MacEgan and James Langley, 15 April 2020

As of Tuesday, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in North Carolina was 5,024, with 108 deaths recorded.

Modi extends India’s coronavirus lockdown till May 3

By Wasantha Rupasinghe and Keith Jones, 15 April 2020

Modi offered no plan to deal either with the health emergency or the socio-economic calamity triggered by the sudden, unplanned lockdown.

Coronavirus exposes Chilean two-tiered health system as deathtrap

By Mauricio Saavedra, 15 April 2020

It is the policy of sustained socio-economic shock therapy initiated under Pinochet that lay the groundwork for incalculable loss of life today

With anger mounting over pandemic response, unions make pitch to save American capitalism

By Jerry White, 15 April 2020

In a joint comment published by USA Today, the leaders of four major unions urge corporate America to use their services to “restore profits and economic growth.”

Boris Johnson’s praise for the National Health Service: Hypocrisy without limit

By Robert Stevens and Chris Marsden, 14 April 2020

It will not be long before Johnson’s words of praise for the NHS will be nothing but a bitter memory, cited by angry doctors and nurses as the Tories resume their efforts to destroy it.

UK NHS workers speak to the WSWS: “Is it worth clapping the NHS without ensuring the safety of frontline workers?”

By our reporters, 14 April 2020

Several NHS workers have contacted the WSWS following the attacks by Conservative Health Minister Matt Hancock, who accused NHS staff of wasting personal protective equipment resources.

A letter from a frontline nurse at the UK’s Royal Bournemouth Hospital

14 April 2020

The WSWS received the following letter in response to the statement by Prime Minister Boris Johnson following his discharge from hospital.

Five Michigan grocery and retail workers die from COVID-19

By Stephen Fuller, 14 April 2020

Evidence is emerging that the pandemic is sweeping through workers at grocery and retail establishments, which have been kept open and identified as part of the critical infrastructure workforce in most states.

New York City digging mass graves for coronavirus victims

By Josh Varlin, 11 April 2020

Victims of the pandemic are being buried en masse on Hart Island off the coast of the Bronx, just 16 miles from Wall Street, the center of world finance.

The COVID-19 crisis in New York City

Interview with Bronx emergency room nurse: “Some critical patients are not getting the medication and IV pumps they need"

By Clara Weiss, 11 April 2020

Hospitals throughout New York City, the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic, are running out of medication and equipment.

German hospitals become COVID-19 hotspots for health care workers

By Markus Salzmann, 11 April 2020

According to the Robert Koch Institute, more than 2,300 doctors and nurses have been infected with coronavirus in Germany.

Australian hospitals lack ventilators and staff to deal with pandemic

By Clare Bruderlin, 11 April 2020

A ventilator manufacturing deal this week highlighted the shortage of urgently-needed intensive care medical equipment.

The COVID-19 crisis in New York City

Nurses at Elmhurst Hospital speak out: “I’ve never seen so many young people die”

By Clara Weiss, 9 April 2020

With hundreds of COVID patients, the hospital is running low on PPE, medication, ventilators and staff.

Police in Pakistan beat and arrest health care workers protesting over Coronavirus safety concerns, lack of PPE

By Dr. Zayar, 9 April 2020

Police brutally attacked several hundred medical staff after they marched to the house of the Balochistan Chief Minister in Quetta to protest the lack of personal protective equipment or PPE.

UK social care system faces collapse amid spike in coronavirus deaths

By Stephen Alexander, 9 April 2020

Mass deaths and runaway infections have begun to rip through UK residential and nursing home facilities, bringing adult social care services to the brink of collapse.

Alberta doctors protest UCP government’s funding cuts amid coronavirus pandemic

By Janet Browning, 9 April 2020

More than 800 doctors signed an angry open letter to the hard-right United Conservative Party government protesting cuts to doctors’ fees that will result in reduced services at hundreds of rural clinics across the province.

World Health Organization warns against premature ending of social distancing measures

By Bryan Dyne, 8 April 2020

The warnings come as the number of deaths worldwide approaches 82,000 and the number of officially confirmed cases burst past 1.4 million.

US automakers planning return to work before coronavirus danger subsides

By Tom Hall and Jessica Goldstein, 8 April 2020

Automakers are planning a return to work that would endanger workers and their families.

Worker revolt spreads, demanding protections from coronavirus

By Marcus Day, 8 April 2020

Expanding layers of the working class throughout the world are being drawn into the struggle for lifesaving necessities.

British prime minister: A victim of his “herd immunity” policy

By Robert Stevens, 8 April 2020

Whatever Johnson’s personal fate, the herd immunity policy that landed him seriously ill in hospital has already contributed to many infections and thousands of deaths nationwide.

New York records worst death toll in pandemic, as 731 die in one day

By Josh Varlin, 8 April 2020

The official figures must be considered substantial underestimates, since there has been a reported surge in people dying in their homes, rather than in hospital.

Grocery worker dies from COVID-19 infection in suburban Maryland

By Nick Barrickman, 8 April 2020

Grocery workers have been increasingly falling ill as the coronavirus spreads through the population.

Africa’s refugees and internally displaced: The weakest link in the human chain

By Jean Shaoul, 8 April 2020

As the pandemic spreads to Africa, Asia and Latin America, the coronavirus will hit the world’s most vulnerable even harder.

Africa’s elite build VIP hospitals for themselves, leaving workers to die

By Stephan McCoy, 8 April 2020

The response of the African ruling elite has been to cocoon itself in luxury, distancing from the impoverished masses it views with hostility and fear.

UK: Health workers threatened for wearing PPE and reporting danger to their lives

By Tony Robson, 8 April 2020

The threats to health workers have been particularly directed at any use of social media platforms such as Twitter and Instagram.

Canada’s health minister promotes “herd immunity,” after admitting government’s coronavirus failure

By Laurent Lafrance, 8 April 2020

Health Minister Hajdu acknowledged that if Canada’s hospitals lack vital equipment it is because the government has been “underfunding” healthcare “for decades.”

Thai government introduces lockdowns amid criticisms of its pandemic response

By Owen Howell, 8 April 2020

Within a month, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Thailand has leapt from a few dozen to over 2,000.

The deadly consequences of the gutting of America’s public health infrastructure

By Gary Joad, 7 April 2020

Politicians and media pundits have accepted that mass sickness and death are the inevitable product of the COVID-19 outbreak.

US hospitals raise prices, cuts costs and lay off staff in midst of COVID-19 crisis

By Warren Duzak and Douglas Lyons, 7 April 2020

Funds to purchase necessary health equipment and increase operating capacity to battle the coronavirus will come from raising hospitals’ already extortionist rates for procedures, while cutting vital staff.

BREAKING NEWS

Detroit nurses forced to leave hospital after protesting understaffing

By Evan Blake, 6 April 2020

At around midnight Monday morning, seven night shift nurses at Sinai-Grace Hospital in Detroit were sent home after refusing to work in unsafe, understaffed conditions amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

As the coronavirus tolls soar worldwide

Deaths from COVID-19 in New York double in three days

By Bryan Dyne, 4 April 2020

While New York is the most seriously hit, many other regions in the United States are facing a similarly catastrophic situation.

Mounting opposition among German health care, industrial workers

By Ulrich Rippert, 4 April 2020

The German government has implemented a bailout program for major companies and banks, but health care and industrial workers are forced to work under catastrophic conditions.

UK: Elderly will be left to die as coronavirus plunges care sector into crisis

By Stephen Alexander, 4 April 2020

It is estimated that up to a fifth of all COVID-19 deaths in the UK have occurred in care homes, hospices, and individual households.

US health care workers face retribution for criticizing unsafe hospital conditions

By Benjamin Mateus, 4 April 2020

The shortage or entire absence of personal protective equipment (PPE) is driving health care workers to voice their concern over the danger of becoming infected.

An interview with four Chinese physicians at the epicenter of the pandemic in Wuhan

By Benjamin Mateus, 3 April 2020

Four doctors who went through the worst of the COVID-19 epidemic in China recently spoke with the WSWS about their experiences and the lessons for the wider world.

Statistical lies used to justify continued inaction, paint the US epidemic as nearly over

By Don Barrett, 2 April 2020

The US ruling class turns to bad statistics to justify its continued inaction and paint a picture that the worst is just ahead.

UK: Communication Workers Union seeks unity with Royal Mail against postal workers

By Thomas Scripps, 2 April 2020

That the CWU is now appealing for the most basic sanitary protections is an admission of the desperately unsafe conditions it volunteered its membership into when calling off the planned national strike.

Cuomo presses forward with Medicaid cuts as New York City health care system overwhelmed by pandemic

By Josh Varlin, 2 April 2020

Even though New York City’s hospitals and medical workers are overwhelmed by the pandemic, Governor Andrew Cuomo is pushing forward with planned cuts to Medicaid.

Tennessee governor’s delay in issuing stay-at-home order means thousands more will die, physicians warn

By Warren Duzak, 2 April 2020

“This is not a mandated shelter in place order, but it is a strong urging for Tennesseans to stay at home,” Gov. Lee said during his daily media briefing.

New Zealand workers speak out on unsafe conditions, wage cuts

By Tom Peters, 2 April 2020

Workers spoke to the WSWS about the lack of personal protective equipment and other safety measures.