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The capital’s parish had the same number of COVID-19 cases as the Amazonian province





The situation of COVID-19 in the capital of the Republic is critical. Several Quito parishes have the same number of cases as provinces where the population is two, three and up to seven times higher.

That happens in Chillogallo. Last Thursday, 1,672 cases were reported, the same number as the Sucumbíos province. Thus, a parish with more than 70,000 people equalled a province with 230,000 inhabitants in the number of cases.

Something similar happens with Guamaní, in the south. With just 86,000 people, the cases reached 1,347, three more than in Carchi, a province with 187,000 inhabitants.

La Magdalena, in the south center of the city, has 38,000 residents. The number of cases there reached 890, ten less than in Cañar, a province that has a population seven times that of 281,000 inhabitants.

Populous parishes

In those three parishes, along with Calderón, Cotocollao, Belisario Quevedo, Centro Histórico, is where there are more infections by a coronavirus. Chillogallo and Guamaní are south of Quito. They are part of the Quitumbe Zonal Administration of the Capital Municipality that groups together parishes such as La Ecuatoriana. Also Quitumbe and Urubamba. They are localities that have received a great internal migration.

In Chillogallo, for example, there are 58 regularized neighbourhoods and 9 unregulated ones.

Monica Flores, who is the Quitumbe Zonal administrator, mentioned that within the infrastructure there are no universities, although there are schools and public colleges. It also has a Health Center of the Ministry of Health, but not hospitals.

Flores attributes the cases to the fact that Chillogallo is one of the parishes where the greatest tests to detect the virus have been carried out by a number of inhabitants. Also because the economic activity is the autonomous trade that is regularized as well as that which is not regularized.

Probably, added the official, people who, due to the need to bring bread to their table and to have what is necessary for their livelihood, go out to work, many do not follow the biosecurity protocols that have been released.

Another factor, he added, is that many people have brought the virus home from their workplaces.

Jorge Albán, the coordinator of the Public Health Commission of the Faculty of Medical Sciences of the Central University, said that Quito and Pichincha are in the ascending part of the epidemic curve.

For Albán, the worrying thing is that there are parishes in which the increases in the pandemic continue to be sustained.

Guamaní cited, that between August 5 and 12, infections grow from 996 to 1326, 33%; Chillogallo went from 1281 to 1134, 28%; and Calderón, from 816 to 1034 with an increase of 27%.

“These data reveal that the contagion continues on this ascending curve and it is not yet visible when the plateau will be reached, which would be the maximum point”, said Albán.

In the expert’s opinion, the controls in the parishes, where there are more infections, have not been enough. He believes that selective isolation with a red light has been lacking in those areas.

This, he added, should be accompanied by the responsibility of families.

Ximena Abarca, Secretary of Health, said that the first restrictive measures, which were implemented on July 17, in those parishes, had not worked after an analysis, 15 days later.

The curfew, as well as the prohibition to sell liquor in force until August 12, for Abarca, “somehow had been much more effective than the initial control measures.

For Juan Zapata, director of ECU911, the operations have worked well. He added that epidemiological results can only be measured in about two or three weeks.

Almost 300 corpses have been collected

Between April 4 and August 13, a total of 294 presumed and confirmed deaths of COVID-19 have risen from the public thoroughfare, homes, health centers and nursing homes, as reported by the Municipality of Quito.

The highest number of cases of deaths have been registered in the south of the capital with 43%. Then, with 37%, the north, and with 9%, the center of Quito.

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