Vaccinations, seasonal flu, Covid, masks, no vax doctors who can return to the ward in contact with the sick, the new wave of variant Cerberus which will arrive at Christmas. For doctors, and especially for their patients, it is not a moment of clarity: everyone is wondering what are the precautions, needs and urgencies to face the cold season without risk.
“Covid-19 infections are stationary, still numerous but rather modest in terms of symptoms, currently rarely evolve into the dreaded pneumonia and systemic disease – he warns Luigi Atripaldi microbiologist of the company of the Hills – this happens because the Omicron variant, to overcome the barrier of vaccines and immunity, has lost the characteristics of the Delta. Three or four doses of the vaccine and healing immunity have created a balance with Sars-Cov-2 but we still don’t know if it will be stable over time. On the balance plate – concludes Atripaldi – we must put the fact that immunity is not lasting and the most fragile people of the population, such as the elderly and oncologists, but also heart attacks, heart patients, dialysis, continue to be exposed to the most serious consequences of the disease . The healthy, on the other hand, are quite protected ».
The arrival of new variants such as Cerberus, which will cause many cases, must therefore keep us ready. Just like with a cold, the chances of catching Covid several times in a year, as the months go by and with the arrival of new variants, grow. Doctors suggest continuing to use the mask in crowded places and giving vaccine boosters in the fragile and exposed population. “We still know little about the new variant, we are waiting to know the first scientific data on contagiousness and clinical severity – he explains in the meantime. Fiorentino Fraganza, former head of resuscitation of Cotugno – the vaccine remains the only real weapon of prevention. I think it will become like the anti-flu: to be repeated every year with the extension of the protection to the sub-variants. The very few side effects and the excellent immune response at any age make it an indispensable safeguard ».
“As a family doctor – underlines Pina Tommasielli – I say that the health facilities need to resume the normal care routine especially for the elderly and the chronically ill. After what we have been through, we must avoid that a tile can rain on our heads again that paralyzes everything. I say that we need to be cautious and get vaccinated against both Covid and the flu. The impact of free all, taken as a political decision, then pushes away the idea that being vaccinated was useless while the opposite happened ”.
“We are living in a moment of relative stability for Covid pediatric hospitalizations – he adds Vincenzo Type, primary of the Santobono – for some weeks the little patients have not exceeded 4-5 all under the age of one year and with feverish symptoms. The anomalous heat may have played an important role in calming the spread of viral diseases including Covid. Even bronchiolitis, which in this period filled the wards, has not yet presented itself. For the issue of masks, we started a few years ago an awareness campaign for use at home when there is a newborn or a very young child. In the family, viral circulation can be very high and expose newborns to even major respiratory infections. Mask and hand washing should be a must ».
What everyone agrees on is that the use of masks played an important role in limiting infections. Used correctly they have reduced the spread of all respiratory diseases. «A basic precaution – he concludes Saverio Annunziata, general practitioner with office in Chiaia – to keep colds, flu and even Covid at bay. I put them on the same level because they are very annoying pathologies for the population in general but no more life-threatening, except for frail subjects. Thanks to vaccinations extended to all fragile subjects, we are also able to protect the elderly, heart patients, diabetics, bronchopneumopaths. We continue to recommend vaccination for those at risk ».