A rather high number of persons, practically 80% of those who died from COVID-19, are older than 60. The fact that most of those who died are aged between 60 and 69 is worrisome. Statistics show that 1,169 of the over 1,500 persons who died were older than 60, Tatiana Zatyk, head of the Primary Emergency and Community Medical Assistance Division of the Ministry of Health, Labor and Social Protection, said in a public debate staged by HelpAge International Moldova.
She noted that it is not possible to determine if the isolation of the persons older than 36 helped to achieve the expected result, but this measure contributed to reducing the probability of a higher number of cases among the elderly. “The human rights result from the objective to diminish the impact of the infection on elderly persons and these figures show that the impact of noncommunicable diseases on the elderly is the greatest. Namely the noncommunicable diseases in older persons worsen faster together with the infection with COVID-19 and have a very serious impact on their health,” explained Tatiana Zatyk.
According to her, the right to life is essential and this attitude to the elderly that is considered caring is aimed at ensuring the observance of their rights and at excluding cases of infection and the serious forms of COVID-19. “I think the emphases placed in this period by the healthcare system, namely by adjusting the services to the needs of the population, including the elderly, are the most important thing during the pandemic. The supporting of the young persons, of families is important for the elderly. I don’t think this is a violation of the rights of the elderly. On the contrary, it is a situation imposed by the existing situation in order to protect their health and life,” stated the specialist.
Tatiana Zatyk reiterated that the maintaining of social distancing, washing of the hands and respiratory culture are the most important tasks for each member of society for preventing infection with the novel coronavirus. There should be proper connection between the elderly persons and the family doctor so as to discuss all the health problems and avoid cases of discrimination on grounds of insufficient access to medical services.
The public debate was held in the framework of the project “Integration of active aging into public policies in the Republic of Moldova” that is implemented by HelpAge International and the Platform for Active Aging, with support from East Europe Foundation, in partnership with the Partnership for Development Center, with the resources provided by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and Sweden.