Jaap Van Dessel of the National Institute of Public Health in an interview with NOS appears to link the high number of infections in nursing homes and the educational level of caregivers. This is what Marietta de Klein, Head of Platform Caregivers at Professional V&VN says. These statements were described as a “slap in the face to the caregivers who are there day and night under severe pressure on the vulnerable population.”
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In the Boxing Day interview, the head of RIVM was asked what went wrong in nursing homes, where the number of virus infections during the first wave was high due to a lack of testing and protective equipment. “What we learned is that a lot of factors play a role there. The educational level of the caregivers plays a role in this situation in nursing homes. It’s more complicated than hanging on to a single scale. He answers, whatever you like.”
‘What we are ashamed of’
De Klein describes the suggestion that the contagion was due to the educational level of professionals “inappropriate, disrespectful and ashamed of them”. “We ourselves faced the greatest risks because of the policy in place. Because of the lack of personal protective equipment, because the neighborhood and nursing homes have stood at the back of the queue for a long time in distributing them. Because of the unsafe and unrealistic RIVM guidelines for the use of protective equipment and mouth and nose masks.”
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A V&VN spokesperson said the remarks and lack of consideration for the interview in their policy are completely offensive to supporters. De Kleijne’s response is widely shared via social media. “There are hundreds of thousands of caregivers who have been on the front lines against Corona for a year, and he has something to explain in return.”
A spokesperson for RIVM informs NOS that the ruling is definitely not intended to be an attack on caregivers and that V&VN is extremely welcome in RIVM to clear up any misunderstandings about this.