MSF teams providing care to COVID patients in Antonio Lorena hospital, Cusco, Peru.

​MSF started working in Peru in 1985​ and closed its projects in 2007.

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In 2020, (MSF) returned to Peru for the first time in more than a decade to assist the Ministry of Health in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

By mid-May, the country had reported over 70,000 people confirmed with the virus and, although fewer than 2,500 deaths were officially reported, the excess mortality figures warned of an unprecedented health crisis. Borders were closed, a state of emergency was declared, and a strict quarantine and curfew were imposed. Only three months later, in August, the number of confirmed cases exceeded half a million and more than 26,000 people had died.

MSF worked in Peru between July and October 2020. In collaboration with the health services of the Basque Country in Spain, we sent a team of doctors and nurses experienced in the clinical management of COVID-19 patients. The aim of our intervention was to share the knowledge acquired during our COVID-19 responses in other countries, and in the management of epidemics, such as Ebola.

Specialist teams were sent to Tarapoto, Huánuco and Tingo María hospitals in San Martín and Huánuco regions, to support intensive care, emergency and inpatient services. In these hospitals, and in several facilities in Lima and Amazonas regions, MSF also helped to set up segregated zones and circuits, to reduce the risk of contagion for health personnel and COVID-19-negative patients.

Our objective in Amazonas and Loreto regions was to support the basic healthcare system to guarantee good clinical management and health promotion, contact follow-up and detection of symptoms, while also avoiding inadequate medication and the risk of infection for personnel. We trained staff and visited health facilities to ensure services were appropriately adapted. In addition, we donated medicines, personal protective equipment and other medical materials.

No. staff in 2020: 4 (FTE) » Expenditure in 2020: €0.5 million. MSF first worked in the country: 1985.