Navigating the pandemic: A critical perspective on COVID-19 responses in Central America
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Department of Biomedical Gerontology, School of Medicine, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, BRAZIL
Department of Collective Health, Latin American Institute for Life and Nature Sciences, Federal University of Latin American Integration, Foz do Iguaçu, Paraná, BRAZIL
Publication date: 2024-05-06
Electron J Gen Med 2024;21(3):em586
Following the World Health Organization’s declaration of the new coronavirus as a pandemic, nations had to act swiftly to draft effective strategies for the prevention and containment of COVID-19. International literature highlights a range of approaches taken by countries, with varying degrees of success, as measured by the quality and responsiveness of their public health systems. This brief perspective proposes a critical-gerontological reflection on the Central American countries, highlighting the divergent regional approaches to the pandemic that resulted in unequal figures between nations. Despite the intention to face the health challenge collectively, varying governmental positions had a direct impact on the health of the older population. Costa Rica and Panama responded similarly to the crisis, showcasing their better social and health scenarios compared to their peers. The Central American approach to public health was tailored to the political ideology of each country, rather than adhering to the common objectives set by the regional integration scheme in place. Despite the pandemic posing a challenge, the region remains committed to building universal, equitable, and comprehensive public health for older people.
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