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Yemen’s Health System Has “Collapsed” Amid Explosion of Coronavirus Cases

HeadlineMay 27, 2020

In Yemen, the United Nations says an explosion of COVID-19 cases has pushed an already-strained healthcare system past the breaking point. This is a spokesperson for the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

Jens Laerke: “The situation is extremely alarming. They are talking about that the health system has, in effect, collapsed. They are talking about having to turn people away because they do not have enough oxygen, they do not have enough personal protective equipment.”

Officially, Yemen has confirmed just over 200 cases of COVID-19 and 42 deaths. But Yemen has one of the lowest COVID-19 test rates in the world, with just 31 tests per 1 million residents.

In the port city of Aden, epidemiologists have counted a fivefold increase in new grave sites this month over May of last year. Yemen is already suffering the world’s worst humanitarian catastrophe, with some 80% of Yemenis reliant on humanitarian assistance after years of U.S.-backed, Saudi-led war.

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