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Doctors Are Posting Nudes To Protest What They Say Is A Shortage Of Coronavirus Masks

"The nudity should symbolize that we are vulnerable without protection," said one German doctor taking part in the protest.

Posted on April 28, 2020, at 8:44 a.m. ET

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Doctors in Germany treating coronavirus patients are protesting what they say are shortages of masks, gloves, and visors by posing naked.

The group of doctors calls its protest Blanke Bedenken, which roughly translates as Bare Concerns.

They hope their nudes will draw attention to what they say is a lack of available personal protective equipment (PPE) and supplies like disinfectants.

They are also encouraging other doctors and health care workers to join in by submitting their own pictures.

A spokesperson for the group said the page had been live since April 22 but had received a big influx in pictures since it was covered by the German newspaper Bild on Monday.

The response to the protest had been “absolutely positive” so far, the spokesperson said, adding that the German government had to not only buy more PPE but make better use of its existing supplies.

Ruben Bernau, one of the doctors taking part in the protest, said the group was inspired by the French doctor Alain Colombié, who posted a picture of himself sitting in his office naked apart from an armband with the words “cannon fodder” on it.

In a message directed at French President Emmanuel Macron, Colombié wrote that French doctors were being asked “to go to the front without weapons and no defenses.”

"The nudity should symbolize that we are vulnerable without protection," Bernau said.

Jana Husemann, another doctor taking part in the protest, said, "We want to and must continue to take good care of our patients, especially those who need a personal examination.

"This includes those with chronic diseases, acute wounds, as well as coronavirus patients.”

According to a study from an association of German health insurers cited by the Guardian, doctors in Germany are lacking more than a 100 million single-use masks.

Germany has also been praised for its response to the pandemic, with a considerably lower death rate than other countries with large numbers of cases.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.