Serious injuries suffered by migrants while climbing over the US-Mexico border wall soared by 460% in the two years after Trump ordered height of steel barrier to be increased to 30feet
- A UC San Diego Health research study found 375 migrants who fell from a 30-feet tall border wall were treated at its trauma center between 2019 and 2021
- In comparison, the facility’s unit admitted 67 individuals with severe injuries caused by border wall falls from 2016 to 2019
- According to the report, 16 migrants died after falling from the border wall since 2019 after no deaths were registered in the previous years
- The study looked into border wall-related medical facility admissions from January 2016 to December 2021
The number of severe injuries suffered by migrants attempting climb over the border wall in southern San Diego rose by almost five times since 2019 after former President Donald Trump increased the height from as low as 6ft to 30ft.
UC San Diego Health revealed it had treated 375 people for high-severity injuries between 2019 and 2021. In comparison, there were only 67 such cases from 2016 to 2019.
UC San Diego Health also reported 16 deaths since 2019, compared to zero deaths previously.
The study investigated border wall-related medical facility admissions from January 2016 to December 2021.
‘The height increase of the border wall along the San Ysidro and El Centro sectors was touted as making the barrier ‘unclimbable’ but that has not stopped people from attempting to do with consequential results,’ wrote Dr. Amy Liepert, the UC San Diego Health medical director of acute care surgery.
At least 375 migrants were hurt and 16 died after falling from 405-mile long border wall between 2019 and 2021 that former President Donald Trump ordered its height to be increased to 30 feet, according to a research report by UC UC San Diego Health
Dr. Amy Liepert talks to Cuban migrant Hector Almeida, who broke his leg in April after falling from a border wall in San Diego
Authorities in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, carry the body of a migrant that was found near a metal border wall near the Santa Teresa border crossing on November 9, 2021
Dr. Liepert called the spike in migrant injuries and deaths ‘an unseen public health crisis’ that is ongoing and ‘has significantly affected major local health care providers in San Diego.’
Trump signed an executive order on January 24, 2017, which led to the replacement of existing barriers that ranged between six to 17 feet tall and increased it to 30 feet tall in San Diego and Imperial Counties.
The report noted that migrants who fell from the new border wall suffered serious injuries to the brain, face and limbs. A lot of the patients required intensive care unit hospitalization and multiple surgeries.
‘Additional capacity and associated costs were not accounted for in the federally appropriated funds to reinforce and heighten the border barrier system,’ Liepert said. ‘Hospital costs for border wall-injured immigrants at UC San Diego Health alone are estimated to be approximately $13 million between 2019 and 2021.’
The UC San Diego Health research study slammed the Trump administration for not taking into account the costs that medical facility incurred for treating migrants who did not have health insurance and required longer hospital stays because they didn’t’ quality for treatment at rehabilitation centers or therapy after they were discharged.
Asylum-seeking migrants walk near the border wall after crossing the Rio Grande river in El Paso, Texas, on April 6
Migrants seeking asylum wait to be taken into custody by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers near the U.S. and Mexico border fence in Yuma, Arizona, on February 21
Trump managed to construct hundreds of new barrier miles at the southwestern border with Mexico in keeping with his initial campaign promise to combat the crossings of undocumented immigrants
He vowed that Mexico would cover the cost of the border structure, but instead the U.S. spent $11 billion in tax dollars, which was primarily pulled from Defense Department funding.
‘This is a local public health crisis that has worsened trauma center bed capacity, resulting in staff shortages and has taxed our extremely dedicated health care professionals,’ wrote Dr. Jay Doucet, the division chief of trauma and surgical critical care at UC San Diego Health. ‘It is also a humanitarian crisis in which people are being severely injured or dying at the border, and because this is happening it is impacting available access to trauma care for San Diegans as well.’