Coronavirus Chronicle in Moldova: Has a New Wave Arrived?

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The new wave of the epidemic, anticipated during the past weeks, has finally reached Moldova. The number of new cases per day has quadrupled over the previous month. Other statistic data, in particular, mortality rate, have also skyrocketed.
Over the past year and a half, the coronavirus has been the hottest front-page topic ever. Mutations, one after another, trigger new waves of disease. Now we are witnessing the third (in some places the fourth) wave. Despite the attempts to contain the infection through restrictive measures and immunizing the population, the coronavirus strains are rapidly and deadly spreading around the world. Even the most optimistic experts make no predictions as to the end of the pandemic. Rather, the opposite is true. WHO's reported intention to name new COVID-19 strains after star constellations suggests that this infection will remain with humanity forever. According to the doctor and TV presenter Alexander Myasnikov, 28 letters of the Greek alphabet will most likely not be enough to denote the constantly emerging new virus mutations. WHO sees a new type of coronavirus as a real threat. Thus, its chief, Tedros Ghebreyesus, warned of a "period of real danger" for humanity. "With the development of vaccines in record time, we have come so far. But the world is now in a period of real danger. Many of the gains we have made are now being eroded," Gebreyesus says. As the WHO director-general explained, the increase in the number of cases of COVID-19 is due to the non-compliance with restrictions on social contacts, inconsistent work of health systems and inequitable vaccination. International organizations do not have enough funds to fight against new strains, in particular "delta". WHO has requested $ 11.5 billion in emergency funding. Most of the money is needed to buy tests, oxygen and face masks in poor countries; a quarter - to purchase hundreds of millions of vaccines. This is one of the reasons why the organization calls for a temporary moratorium on boosters, until at least the end of September, due to a shortage of doses. Amid the ongoing epic with the search for where the new type of coronavirus originated from and the WHO statements that the lab leak hypothesis should not be ruled out, China promises to supply 2 billion doses of vaccine worldwide within a year. In addition, Beijing plans to allocate $ 100 million to the global COVAX vaccine procurement and distribution facility. Meanwhile, there have been more than 206.5 million confirmed cases globally, with more than 4.4 million reported deaths. Since the end of June, global statistics have shown a steady increase in the number of new infections and, more important and worse, in the mortality rates. In less than 2 months, the number of deaths per day increased by an average of 20-25%. In many countries, the main coronavirus indicators are breaking records again. For example, Russia has recently set a new anti-record for the number of Covid deaths, and Japan has been breaking records for the number of new cases for several days. Statistical indicators describing the situation in the Republic of Moldova are also not encouraging. The number of new cases per day has increased four-fold over the month: from an average of 70 to almost 280. The number of active cases has doubled: if a month ago the number of simultaneous cases of disease in Moldova was 829, now there are 1,723 of them. Of course, the peak of 23,000 as was in March is still far away, but here the growth rates of indicators are important. The Ministry of Health believes that ahead of a new wave, immunization is the only remedy. Refusal to vaccinate, according to the Ministry of Health, is a way to a hospital bed: 99% of patients infected with COVID-19 were not vaccinated. At the same time, the authorities draw attention to the fact that the rate of vaccination has declined sharply. In the last week, the first dose was received by about 32 thousand people, while earlier during this time almost 3 times more were immunized, up to hundreds of thousands of citizens. Against the background of a decrease in the rate of vaccination, the number of deaths from complications is growing. In the last week alone, mortality has increased by 140%. To date, 6,298 people have already died from the coronavirus in our country. During the five months of the nationwide immunization campaign against COVID-19 in Moldova, only 15% of citizens were vaccinated. The figure is much lower than necessary. The authorities urge citizens to be more active in getting vaccinated. A sufficient number of drugs are now available, and people can choose which vaccine to take. "The vaccines we have are safe and of the best quality," the new Minister of Health, Ala Nemerenco, stresses urging the population to continue to wear protective masks, maintain social distance, avoid crowded places and observe hygiene measures. The current development of the situation has led to the need to declare the red code in several districts of Moldova, in other communities the authorities are preparing for the influx of cases in advance and are reopening departments with wards for patients with COVID-19. Of particular concern is the start of the educational process in September. In this environment, it is still difficult to speak about positive forecasts for the republic. The new government is also aware of this. State Secretary of the Ministry of Health, Svetlana Nicolaescu, announced that a meeting of the National Emergency Commission for Public Health will be held soon, following which new restrictions to counter infection might be introduced.