The pandemic is not gone. Argentina despite having received more than 91 million vaccines with one of the most diverse and numerous inoculation portfolios against COVID-19 in Latin America, with more than 63% of the total population vaccinated with the complete scheme, but still with 79% of the country that only received one dose; reveals the clamor of infectious disease experts and immunologists who point out that it is not time to relax social protection measures against the pandemic and that vaccination campaigns should be accelerated and better communicated in all stages and age groups. All epidemiological behaviors that help enhance the protective effect of vaccines.
In this same sense Yesterday, the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Buenos Aires (UBA) drafted a forceful Resolution of the Board of Directors that achieved absolute consensus (RESCD-2021-06245655) where it first developed an informative context of 11 points about the future of the pandemic at all three levels – the local, the regional and the global. And then he set a specific position through 4 points (articles) with reference to the impact of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic that has already caused more than 5 million deaths in the world and more than 115 thousand deaths in our country.
Articles 1st. And 3rd. are the most relevant and express, “Recommend the incorporation of vaccination against SARS-CoV-2, as a mandatory vaccination for the entire adult population in Argentina.” and “request an interview with the President of the Nation, or whoever he decides, in order to explain the reasons that motivate this resolution”.
The eleven points of context
1- That we have vaccines that have demonstrated an extraordinary safety, efficacy and effectiveness profile, having already been administered to more than 52% of the world population.
2- That there is a practically unanimous consensus worldwide regarding anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccines as the central tool in the fight against the pandemic.
3- That a new wave of infections with epicenter in Europe and the United States has clearly shown that the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic continues to pose a central challenge to the health of peoples around the world, threatening to cause millions of new deaths.
4- That although Argentina currently has a low level of viral circulation, it is logical to expect an increase in the frequency of infections in the coming months based on the prevalence, both globally and locally, of a variant of SARSCoV-2 (delta variant ) endowed with greater infectious potential compared to all the variants that previously arose.
5- That the history of the current pandemic has shown that the countries that make up the Southern Cone, including Argentina, tend to reproduce -with months of delay- the epidemiological situation observed in Europe and the United States, in relation to the incremental pattern of infections .
6- That it is necessary to urgently implement the necessary measures in order to avoid a substantial increase in the number of infected people in our country, given the difficulty in controlling the increasing infection curves, once they have acquired a significant slope .
7- That a group of countries, such as the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Spain and many others, have already decided to implement mandatory vaccination for broad sectors of the population, such as health personnel and teachers at all levels of education.
Consulted by Infobae about the scope of this Resolution, Dr. Jorge Geffner, immunologist, professor in immunology and microbiology at the Faculty of Medicine (UBA) and in charge of the COVID Program and CONICET researcher explained, “lhe position of the Board of Directors of the Faculty of Medicine is essentially correct, it proposes mandatory vaccination for all adults. Do youWhy is it correct? First, because we have 52 percent of the entire planet vaccinated, that is, the experience with vaccines has shown two things: they are very safe and tremendously effective. Today a vaccinated person has between 14 and 15 times less chance of contracting a severe infection compared to someone who is not vaccinated ”.
8- That the analysis of the progression of infections is multifactorial, one of the most correlatable variables, is that the number of vaccinated compared with that of deceased persons in European countries clearly shows that the higher the vaccination rate, the fewer people die.
9- That Argentina has made significant progress in the coverage of anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccination in recent months, despite which there are segments of the population that have not yet been vaccinated, despite having been summoned for this purpose. The coverage of more than 92% of those over 40 years of age with one dose, or of more than 85% with both doses, shows that the majority of the population responded to the call, leaving sectors or groups that have yet to be incorporated into the vaccination program.
Added to Infobae Geffner: “We have to be alert not only to what is happening in Europe and the United States, a very important new wave whose protagonist is the Delta variant that today is the protagonist because the previous dominant variants Landa, Manaus and others have been displaced . Today in the AMBA 90 percent of what circulates among those infected is the Delta variant, which we know is much more contagious ”.
“In Argentina, a lot of progress has been made in the vaccination program and that is good. However, there are areas to be covered, we have more than 85 percent coverage in what is vaccination over 50 years. But we have 700,000 people over the age of 60 who did not receive any vaccination and those people have to go house to house. And then we have a sector of young people between 18 and 39 years old who are being summoned, but 25 percent do not respond to the summons and are not going to complete the scheme with two doses. And we need to move forward, ”Geffner concluded.
10– That Argentina currently has, and will have in the coming months, a sufficient quantity of vaccines in order to vaccinate its population as a whole. Due to the above and based on its responsibility as a leading institution in the training of professionals in the field of health and consistent with its founding commitment in the defense of life and public health, understood as an inalienable and universal right.
eleven- That article 113 of the University Statute empowers this Body to dictate the present.
After the eleven points detailed above, the Board of Directors of the Faculty of Medicine decided to publicly disclose four fundamental points (concrete measures)
ARTICLE 1: Recommend the incorporation of vaccination against SARS-CoV-2, as a mandatory vaccination for the entire adult population in Argentina.
ARTICLE 2: Reinforce campaigns to promote vaccination against SARS-CoV2 in children and adolescents throughout the country.
ARTICLE 3: Request an interview with the President of the Nation, or whoever he decides, in order to explain the reasons that motivate this resolution.
ARTICLE 4: Give the widest possible dissemination to this resolution. ARTICLE 5: REGISTER; pass to the General Secretariat for the purposes it deems appropriate.
In addition to the fact that the Resolution carries an academic value in itself because it is the most renowned group of experts in the country in medical matters and their different specialties, it also bears the signature of two prestigious experts Dr. Ricardo Gelpi, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine (UBA) and Dr. Carlos Damín, a toxicologist and general secretary of the Faculty of Medicine (UBA).
CONICET researcher Geffner warned Infobae, “you have to continue with the vaccination and resume care. In that sense, in Argentina, we have “neglected the care.” Game yesterday in River to full court, absolutely not recommended. Meetings in closed clubs for up to 4 thousand people, without meeting ventilation requirements, absolutely inadequate. Care measures such as chinstrap, social distancing, cross ventilation of the environments that we have totally forgotten about must be retaken. Now we have an additional concern which is this new variant from South Africa (Omicron) which is even more contagious than the Delta. So, proposing compulsory vaccination is an absolutely correct measure ”.
Cover photo: Faculty of Medicine; by Claudio Larrea for set design for “María de Buenos Aires”.