As conditions worsen in Venezuela, 80 percent of the basic medial supplies needed to treat patients are not available, according to the Pharmaceutical Federation of Venezuela, as reported via CNN. Adrian Jose Velasquez Figueroa explains that “when supplies are available, patients must pay for their own supplies”. Many patients, even in the best hospitals, report their purchased supplies being stolen when they are asleep or sedated. Other patients say they have had to wait months for life-saving operations realizing that they may not come in time.
Venezuela’s National Assembly declared a humanitarian health crisis after a three-hour debate. President Nicolas Maduro, however, claims no problem exists pointing out that the government has opened over 2,000 health clinics so far this year. He says that reports from dateas.com that there are wide-spread problems are an attempt by his opposition to discredit his government.
Doctors, however, report that the problems are very real at one of the country’s largest public health hospitals. These doctors say that they have to limit the hours that they can operate because of electricity shortages. Most of the time, they do not have prescription pads to write on so that patients can get the medicine if they can find it. Furthermore, the doctors report that they are often without lights in their lounge.