Expert says while Ukraine struggles with Russia, it is also struggling with COVID

Hospital bed.
Hospital bed. Photo credit Getty Images

As Ukraine continues to be attacked by Russia, the country remains in another fight: a surge in COVID-19 cases due to the omicron variant.

Dr. Michael Osterholm joined News Talk 830 WCCO’s Chad Hartman and shared that the foreign nation reported over 25,000 cases of COVID-19 yesterday.

“They are in the throes of their omicron peak,” Osterholm said.

COVID-19 isn’t the only disease plaguing the country as the doctor shared that Ukraine is also dealing with a Polio outbreak as less than 80% of their kids are vaccinated against the virus.

Right now, Osterholm said that the nation’s health care system is under immense pressure, and the threat of invasion is not helping.

“This is exactly the worst of the worst conditions,” Osterholm said. “When you overlay war on these public health challenges. I mean, people are going to be needing clear medical treatment for war-related injuries.

“But when that falls on top of what is already health care system stress because of 25,000 new cases yesterday of covid, just think how much more complicated this gets,” Osterholm said.

COVID-19 cases have started to fall in Ukraine, peaking at 40,000 new cases a day on Feb. 12, according to Johns Hopkins. Still, the country is seeing a higher number of cases than before the omicron surge at the start of the year.

While this situation is already bad, Osterholm added that an infectious disease like COVID-19 would only make it worse.

“It’s really heartbreaking,” Osterholm said.

Featured Image Photo Credit: Getty Images