An estimated 7,000 health workers around the world have now died from Covid-19 according to new data publised by Amnesty International. There is no systematic global tracking of health worker deaths worldwide and Amnesty collected and analyzed available data in 80+ countries. It has warned that its findings represent a snapshot as the definition of a health worker varies between countries while death from Covid-19 also tends to be interpreted differently.
Mexico has the highest death toll of any country in Amnesty's findings with 1,320 heath workers dying in the pandemic so far. Mexico has a low testing rate compared to ther countries while health workers took to the streets in major cities to protest a chronic lack of PPE during the early stages of the outbreak. Amnesty states that hospital workers are especially at risk as the majority of such services have now been outsourced, leading to a lower level of protective equipment.
The U.S. has suffered the second-highest health worker death toll worldwide with 1,077 deaths recorded by Amnesty with the UK following in third place with 649 deaths. Brazil (634), Russia (631) and India (573) are also among the worst-impacted countries. Steve Cockburn, Head of Economic and Social Justice at Amnesty International, said that "for over seven thousand people to die while trying to save others is a crisis on a staggering scale. Every health worker has the right to be safe at work, and it is a scandal that so many are paying the ultimate price". He added that "there must be global cooperation to ensure all health workers are provided with adequate protective equipment, so they can continue their vital work without risking their own lives.”