May 18, 2024

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Even with advances in vaccination, the epidemic should take some time to end

Published on 8/15/2021 06:00

(Credit: Cibele Moreira/CB/DA Press)

The Federal District is heading toward a scenario in which the majority of the adult population is vaccinated with at least one dose against the coronavirus. This week, the service reached people aged 20 or older. Next Tuesday, the CEO will expand this age group to the group of 18. Progress will be possible thanks to the arrival of 115,990 immunization agents in the nation’s capital yesterday, of whom 55,150 are from CoronaVac and 60,840 are from Pfizer (read more on page 15). So far, 1,784,763 individuals have received the first order; Of these, 689,609 had the full vaccination schedule, and 54,442 took a single dose.

For physician and public health doctor Roberto Bettencourt, the adhesion among the youngsters seen last week was positive. However, control of the epidemic will only be possible when 75% of the population takes both doses or a single dose (yesterday, only 22.59% of the population were immunized with D2 or a single dose and 60.25% with D1). “Access to this indicator is very important to us. It is not enough to move forward with the first application. We need an active search in relation to the second. We cannot leave anyone behind.”

The doctor states that there should be joint action between the DF and the state to advance the immunization of those who did not receive the first dose and to educate the population about the importance of completing the vaccination schedule. “We have a way forward: first, to reach 75% of the population with the first guaranteed dose; then 75% of those with the second; finally, consider strategies for reinforcement with the third dose, especially in the elderly population,” he advises. “We need to move quickly on immunization. The more people vaccinated, the fewer people are exposed to the variants. We’ve lost a lot of people to disease. We need to change this.”

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For those who have seen close people die from COVID-19, having the chance to receive an immunizing agent has brought great relief. “I am excited to get the vaccine. At my age, I thought it would take longer. I was glad they were able to progress,” celebrates student Julia Lopez de Oliveira, 18. Despite the joy, the young woman had difficulties last year. “It was awful, and it was very difficult for me to adapt. I am from a public school and I felt very deprived (in my studies). Apart from some family members I lost,” says a Cruzeiro resident.

Julia’s mother, physiotherapist Ana Maria Lopez, 47, says seeing her family being vaccinated was a long-awaited moment. Her eldest daughter, Natalia Lopez, 23, took the first dose of a COVID-19 immunizing agent on Thursday. This week, Julia will be next. “At home, we were looking forward to it. This disease does not choose age. So my husband and I were very happy for them. One went. And their immunization goes against others. The important thing is to keep everyone healthy, “confirmed Anna Maria.


For student Vitoria Ferreira Guimarães, 18, the news of the start of immunization for people in her age group came at an alarming time. “With the new mutations that have emerged, I hope the vaccine will bring some relief. My friends and I are counting the days when things will return to the way they were. But we know that it will take some time and we have to continue to protect ourselves and wear a mask,” said a Taguatinga Norte resident. . Almost everyone in my family has been vaccinated. Now all that’s missing are my cousins ​​and me. We are from another. “

Accompanied by her sister, Dayana Lucina, 40, and boyfriend, Samuel Koch-Schubert, 20, and Anna Lucina, 19, she attempted the vaccination Thursday at the vaccination center in Parque da Cidade. However, he had to wait a little longer. Only Samuel was able to get the first dose, due to his age. Despite trying, Anna says she is not worried: “When my turn comes, it will be fine. I wanted to try it soon, to enjoy the ride. If not, it’s okay. I waited so long, I can wait a little longer,” says the student .

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expert word

Immunization benefits
All vaccines, not just against COVID-19, are designed to prevent the acute form of the disease and to prevent people from dying. This is their activity. Thus, we avoid hospitalization, high demand for health services and overcrowding, not least because of the persistence of other diseases. The second benefit of the vaccine is that it impedes the circulation of the virus, especially in this scenario we live in, where there is a variant with high transmission capacity (delta). When reducing the age group in a vaccination campaign, the idea is to reduce the spread of the virus as well as deaths, because we know that even in asymptomatic or mild cases, people continue to transmit it.

Anna Helena Germoglio, Infectologist

» Mutations

Discover the strains of Covid-19 that scientists have identified so far

anxiety variables

» BETA (B.1.351) – First identified in South Africa in May 2020

» Alpha (B.1.1.7) – first identified in the UK in September 2020

» Delta (B.1.617.2) – First identified in India in October 2020

» Gamma (P.1) – First identified in Brazil in November 2020

important variables

» Epsilon (B.1.427 / B.1.429) – First identified in the US March 2020

» Zeta (p. 2) – First identified in Brazil, in April 2020

» Kappa (B.1.617.1) – First identified in India in October 2020

» Fish Auction (B 1.526) – First identified in the US in November 2020

» Lambda (C.37) – first identified in Peru in December 2020

» ETA (B.1.525) – identified in several countries, as of December 2020

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» THETA (p. 3) – First identified in the Philippines in March 2021

Trading 11 variable worry

One of the goals of vaccination is to prevent the progression of COVID-19, and thus the emergence of new variants of the novel coronavirus, with high transmission power and causing serious cases. So far, researchers have identified 11 strains of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Four of them are called anxiety variants, because of their high potential to lead to death (read mutations). In the Federal District, gamma – first identified in Manaus – is dominant among the notifications registered by the Ministry of Health, according to samples from the Central Public Health Laboratory (Lacen-DF).
However, the Federal District has more than 80 cases and two deaths due to delta – initially identified in India. Experts point out that it has a greater transmission capacity, especially among unvaccinated people. “Variants lead to a random change. Each time the virus passes through an organism, it tends to replicate. And in this frequency, mutations can appear. Therefore, the fewer people infected, the fewer chances of the variants being present”, explains the epidemiologist and professor at University of Brasilia (UnB), Wildo Navigantes. “A full vaccination is ideal for people to protect against serious conditions. If we reduce physical contact, continue to use a mask, avoid clumps and do proper cleaning, we will achieve better results.”
Wildo notes that a large portion of the population has scaled back their care, undermining the containment of the health crisis. “This is not the time for that (abandoning what the health authorities are recommending). If people persist, we are unlikely to have an anti-epidemic scenario in three months (when young people receive the second dose),” he warns.