Government Neglect Hurts Hungarian Healthcare When It Is Most Needed

Government neglect has led to a healthcare system in Hungary that is critically unprepared to handle the Covid-19 pandemic, according to Human Rights Watch. The international organization’s investigation found inadequate conditions and a lack of necessary supplies and equipment.

There is little soap, sanitizer, and proper cleaning throughout hospitals and health centers, and a lack of sanitation products and PPE for health workers and their patients, HRW found. Many hospitals do not have enough single-bed rooms for those who have contracted the virus as well as insufficient data and testing. HRW highlighted that the Hungarian government has not been abiding to its obligations under the right to health, an international law that dictates countries must have sufficient sanitation and healthy working conditions for workers and patients.

“People shouldn’t fear that going to the hospital will expose them to conditions that will make them sicker,” HRW deputy program director Tom Porteous said. “Hungarian authorities need to urgently put in place reforms and more investments to project patients and health works from infection and death.”

HRW interviewed two dozen former public hospital patients who had contracted infections while getting treatment, or relatives of deceased patients, as well as medical staff and health experts.

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