Since the first case of Omicron strain infection in Latin America and the Caribbean was detected in Brazil at the end of November last year, the strain has gradually developed into the main new coronavirus variant strain circulating in the region. Entering 2022, many countries in Latin America and the Caribbean continue to set records for the number of new cases in a single day. Experts said that strengthening vaccination and personal protection is still the key link in epidemic prevention and control.
Omicron strain hits Latin American countries as cases surge
The World Health Organization released a weekly report on the new crown epidemic on January 11, showing that in the past week, there were more than 6 million new confirmed cases in the Americas, a record high since the epidemic. New confirmed cases in Argentina increased by 101% from the previous week; new deaths in Brazil and Mexico increased by 15% and 28% from the previous week, respectively. As of the afternoon of the 15th local time, the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the region exceeded 51.63 million.
In Argentina, the number of new cases in a single day was close to 140,000, and the cumulative number of newly confirmed cases since 2022 has exceeded 1.33 million. Afghan Minister of Health Bisotti once used “explosive growth” to describe the trend of the epidemic caused by the Omicron strain.
On the 15th, Chile added 9,248 new confirmed cases of new coronary pneumonia in a single day, the highest since the outbreak of the country. Chile’s Deputy Health Minister Valenzuela said the number of new cases may continue to rise. Experts say the impact of the Omicron strain on the country may become more concentrated in February.
To make matters worse, the double attack of the new crown flu
Recently, Brazil, Peru and other countries have reported multiple cases of “double infection” of the new crown and influenza virus, which has attracted attention from all walks of life.
Brazilian virologist Fernando Spielchi (file photo)
In this regard, Brazilian virologist Fernando Spielchi said that when the epidemic situation was severe, countries adopted epidemic prevention measures such as wearing masks and maintaining social distance, while reducing the spread of influenza virus. However, since the end of 2021, the new crown epidemic has relatively slowed down, and epidemic prevention measures have been relaxed in various places. In addition, during the New Year holiday, people gather widely. Influenza broke out in many cities in Brazil. Later, the Omicron strain invaded, causing two viruses. Simultaneous infection.
Strengthening vaccination and self-protection is still the key to epidemic prevention
Although the number of confirmed cases in Latin America has surged, the hospitalization rate, severe disease rate and death rate have not increased significantly. This is closely related to the characteristics of the Omicron strain and the vaccination rate of the new crown vaccine in various countries.
Argentina is steadily advancing vaccination booster shots (Image source: Argentine Inter-American News Agency)
As of the afternoon of the 15th, Argentina has received more than 82.02 million doses of the new crown vaccine, more than 33.94 million people have completed the whole course of vaccination, and more than 9.12 million people have received booster shots. Brazil has completed the entire new crown vaccination rate of more than 67%, and in Chile, the proportion is 87.6%. Peru, Bolivia, Colombia and other countries are also steadily advancing vaccination and booster vaccinations.
Sylvain Aldigieri, the head of the new crown affairs of the Pan American Health Organization, believes that although the available data show that the proportion of hospitalizations of people infected with the Omicron strain is lower than that of the Delta strain, the Omicron strain is less likely to be hospitalized. The specific harm remains to be studied, and it is not clear when it will be effectively controlled. He also said that increasing the vaccination rate and implementing epidemic prevention measures are still the key to reducing infection, and booster vaccination can be used as an effective epidemic prevention strategy. (Headquarters reporter Gong Xiangcheng)Return to Sohu, see more
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