Colombia Reports monitors emergencies and healthcare collapses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic on a daily basis.
The map below indicates provincial alert levels based on Health Ministry data on available intensive care units and alleged municipal healthcare collapses based on sources from the medical community.
█ <10% (saturated / collapsed) █ formal red alert █ 10% – 25% █ 25% – 50% █ 50% – 65% █ 65% – 100%
Politics vs. medicine
To define an alert level, Colombia Reports uses standards on the saturation of intensive care units (ICU’s) commonly used by regional authorities.
The declaration of an alert, however, is a political decision. The map on a regional level merely indicates the availability of ICU’s.
Defining a healthcare collapse
A municipal healthcare collapse does not mean a city’s ICU capacity is full, but that the system as a whole is temporarily unable to provide emergency healthcare or refer people to ICU’s.
This is no exact science, open to interpretation and can contradict the reported ICU capacity.
For example, when the personnel of a city hospital’s ICU unit is quarantined, its capacity will go up while critical care effectively has collapsed. Emergency expansions may pull a system out of a state of collapse from one day to another.
Because civilian authorities are reluctant to admit healthcare collapses, Colombia Reports uses sources within the medical community to indicate whether a system has collapsed or not.
The distribution and redistribution of health resources makes this condition subject to change, which is why this is verified daily.