The end of the mandatory use of the chinstrap arranged this Wednesday by the Ministry of Health marks a new stage of coexistence with the coronavirus, assured specialists in infectology, who also recommended continuing to use it in case of having any symptoms such as cough, fever or muscle pain. to prevent the spread of other respiratory diseases.
“Undoubtedly we are going through that transition of living with the virus“, assured Télam Lautaro De Vedia, an infectious disease doctor at Muñiz Hospital and former president of the Argentine Society of Infectious Diseases (SADI).
“We are freeing ourselves from the chinstrap,” said the infectious disease specialist and warned of the importance of “maintaining alertness in closed environments, such as in the hospital for patient care.”
Each jurisdiction may adopt the pertinent recommendations based on its particular epidemiological situation and the planned health strategy
The decision of the Ministry of Health published in Resolution 1849/2022 in the Official Gazette, takes place at two and a half years since the beginning of the social, preventive and compulsory isolation (ASPO) declared by the Government to alleviate the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The new measure, which coincides with the beginning of spring, continues to recommend the use of a mask “in interior spaces, including work, educational, social settings and public transport.”
Regarding the possibility of developing serious symptoms of Covid-19 at present, De Vedia considered that the risk is “less and less”.
“There are two situations: we are all more and more covered because we have had not only vaccines, but Covid that reinforces immunity“, accurate.
And he stressed: “We are better and the variants are less and less aggressive. There is less severity, so the Covid continues, the pandemic does not.”
According to the resolution, “SARS-CoV-2 has become a seasonal circulation virus”, which means that the use of the chinstrap is only reserved for the presentation of “particular scenarios”.
For her part, the infectious disease doctor Gabriela Piovano assured Télam that in Argentina “We already managed to handle the pandemic”but not in “most of the rest of the world, as vaccination remains fairly low in Africa and Asia.”
In relation to the national situation, the specialist said that “with the vaccination and the outbreaks that have occurred, we are already with a general immunization that protects us from deadly outbreaks, as was the second wave.”
The text highlights the importance of vaccination coverage that managed to considerably reduce the incidence of serious illness and mortality from Covid-19
Regarding the resolution of the health portfolio, the infectologist at Muñiz Hospital indicated that “it is a way of saying that everything we did was useful because although there are still outbreaks, the repercussion and impact are really minimal. From that place it makes no sense continue with the obligation.
However, Piovano pointed out that “Prevention measures should always continue to be sustained” and stressed the need to “avoid going to places when one has respiratory conditions.”
In this sense, he explained that it is important that people maintain the habit of “using a mask when they have a respiratory condition and trying to keep their distance, especially with people who have risk factors.”
Something similar was raised by De Vedia, who considered that “Perhaps now we have a little more awareness and if we have any symptoms we stay at home”.
“On the subway, on public transport and in work meetings, it would be good to continue wearing the mask,” the doctor recommended.
And he added: “I would tell people who have some risk factor and those who have not been vaccinated to take care of themselves.”
Measures to avoid infections
Among the measures to prevent the spread of viruses, Piovano explained that in the face of symptoms such as cough, fever, muscle pain or headache, it is necessary to “keep some isolation and cough under the elbow.”
“Also hand hygiene and the use of alcohol gel would have to stay forever because they are measures that serve us both for respiratory diseases and for those that are processed by direct contact,” he added.
In addition, the resolution of the health portfolio suggests ensure ventilation of the environments and, in the presence of symptoms, avoid contact with other peoplenot going to work, social, educational activities, public places and avoiding the use of transportation.
The new measure entered into force today throughout the country and each jurisdiction “will be able to adopt the pertinent recommendations based on its particular epidemiological situation and the planned health strategy,” the official text added.