Covid-19 equipment shortages have challenged nations around the world, but Venezuela’s political and economic crises make the pandemic particularly severe. Many medical professionals have been forced to purchase their own personal protective equipment (PPE) to serve their patients, which takes a significant bite out of their meager income. Doctors across Venezuela created a grassroots support network in July to help bridge the gap between helping patients and making sure they have the PPE to do so safely. In the span of three weeks in September, the initiative delivered more than 3,000 face masks, 2,000 meals, gallons of sanitizing alcohol, hand disinfectant, soap and boxes of gloves. Dr. Navas, a central figure in the support network, said, “We’ve seen massive solidarity. People always talk about Venezuela, how it’s collapsing, and they’re right. But the crisis has also shown the strength of people’s hearts.”

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