Millennium Post (Kolkata)

Shortage of intubation drugs threatens Brazil health sector


RIO DE JANEIRO: Reports are emerging of Brazilian health workers forced to intubate patients without the aid of sedatives, after weeks of warnings that hospitals and state government­s risked running out of critical medicines.

One doctor at the Albert Schweitzer municipal hospital in Rio de Janeiro told the Associated Press that for days health workers diluted sedatives to make their stock last longer. Once it ran out, nurses and doctors had to begin using neuromuscu­lar blockers and tying patients to their beds, the doctor said. You relax the muscles and do the procedure easily, but we don't have sedation, said the doctor, who agreed to discuss the sensitive situation only if not quoted by name. Some try to talk, resist. They're conscious.

Lack of required medicines is the latest pandemic problem to befall Brazil, which is experienci­ng a brutal COVID-19 outbreak that has flooded the nation's intensive care units.

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