Saturday , October 23 2021

Tuberculosis, flu and insalubrity go to immigrants on the way to the USA


The road from tropical Central America, from the jungle to the gigantic capital of Mexico and then the desert leading to the United States, reduces the health of a crowded travel trailer that can withstand extreme climatic changes, as well as overcrowding and physical exhaustion.

At dawn on Sunday, nearly 5,000 American family members, mainly Honduras, marched again, stoics, to their American dream, pushing strollers with children still asleep and pulling heavy blankets that they struggled with cold night in the outer corridors of the Corregidor stadium of the central state of Querétaro.

But as soon as they reach the point where the road to neighboring Guanajuato begins, the first signs of wear among the weakest members of that swarm of people have appeared.

A teenager disappeared at the edge of the road.

"It takes a few days with fever", he reached for one of the young people who accompanied him before he loaded it.

A few yards away, a 4-year-old girl from Honduras fell to the floor, convulsively, making an eternal line to get on a goods trailer with her mother, Mirna Carolina Ayala.

"I do not know what you have, you did not want to eat for a few days … if something happens, I die," the woman said, sobbing to AFP while rescuers gave oxygen to the girl.

Little Madaleli "brings fever and glucose is high, should be evaluated by the pediatric team for possible prediabetes." He is dehydrated, he did not eat well, "said Luis Manuel Martinez, emergency coordinator of the local health secretary's emergency system,

When she regained consciousness, the girl was taken by ambulance to the hospital. His cries of pain terrified a large part of the caravan.

Winter is coming

In general, the caravan is in a "deteriorated condition".

"They come from a hot climate, and here the temperature goes down, more consumption, people are not used to these walking days, badly eaten and burned," explains Martínez.

For physicians, the most urgent risks are respiratory and gastrointestinal infections.

"We have detected pockets of flu and tuberculosis infection," said the Red Cross doctor, who asked for anonymity and spent the night in a shelter.

At dawn in the crowded stadium of the stadium there was a symphony of sneezing, moans of sighs and coughs, struck by strong currents of icy air.

"Most of us have been affected by cough, flu, because of exaggerated climate, very cold, I can not stand it," said José Castellano, a 20-year-old Honduran who left the medical camp with hands full of medicine.

The spread of viruses and bacteria is frequent.

"If you do not take your boat with water, you must take it from your partner," explains the young man trembling from the cold, under the two pants and the double jacket that you saw.

Castellano understands that every day that passes, approaches the winter, which reaches below zero temperatures near the northern border.

"You must be prepared not to kill us with hypothermia," he said.

Garbage and a few toilets

According to the World Health Organization, tuberculosis affects the lungs, causing cough, fever, night sweats and weight loss.

Although it is quickly curable, treated by coughing, sneezing or spitting, for example, Influenza.

These diseases can become epidemics, cause pneumonia or death.

Migrants burned in an open space, creating a giant mat or multi-colored mosaic. Together with them, there are always mobile toilets, which sometimes overflow, in addition to the dirt and debris that are generated.

There were only ten toilets at the stadium, "five for men and five for women (…) and we are a crowd", lamented Julio Díaz, an electrician from Honduras who has to cure his child for an eye infection.

"The problem is that some of us who walk here are neat, but others are very dirty, they have no education, pigs!" He said, squeezing the plastic medicine bag.

Through the labyrinth of the corridors of the camp, there are cries of headaches, bones, feet, shoulders, molars, abdomen, chest. There are also soul pains.

"What hurts is my heart, I miss all that I love in my country," says Araceli López, a single mother who hugs her daughter with a special comb of lice.

"Children always cuddle and play, so all lice are filled," he explains as one of the parasites crushes between her nails.

author: Yemeli ORTEGA


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