Coronavirus Chronicle in Moldova: Is Another Peak About to Happen?

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This week, the daily increase in new cases has almost halved, but the rate of spread of the virus remains extremely high – on average, three thousand people get infected every day. At the same time, experts predict a new peak of infections very soon
This week began with a not too optimistic statement by the WHO leading epidemiologist Maria van Kerkhove that the organization receives reports of millions of new cases every day, and these data do not fully reflect the picture. Besides, the WHO representative expressed extreme concern that the last four weeks have seen a sharp increase in mortality rates around the world. Omicron very quickly replaced Delta, and not in all countries the new wave of the pandemic has reached its peak. Van Kerkhove reported that the course of the disease when infected with Omicron can be different: from asymptomatic to severe conditions and fatal outcome. Despite the fact that this strain less often leads to hospitalization, there are quite a lot of such cases. “There are people who struggle with the infection and die of it,” the expert added. WHO is currently monitoring 4 variants of Omicron: BA.1, BA.1.1, BA.2 and BA.3. WHO Senior Adviser Bruce Aylward shared his colleague’s concerns and said that the number of coronavirus cases in the world is still “absolutely staggering”. “If we look at the current situation, there are still 2 million registered infection cases, more than 5,000 people die every day,” the expert notes. For example, yesterday WHO reported that over 2.33 million new cases were registered during the day, and more than 12 thousand patients died. In total, 406.9 million cases of coronavirus infection have been identified to date, of which 5.8 million are fatal. According to experts, COVID-19 vaccines remain the most reliable way to protect against the severe course of the disease. WHO and its partners are making efforts to provide vaccines to as many people as possible around the world. The European Commission reported on this occasion that half of the world’s population is currently vaccinated against coronavirus. “Now 50% of the world’s population is fully vaccinated. Europe has exported more than 1.7 billion doses of vaccinations to 165 countries,” European Commissioner for Health Stella Kyriakides noted the other day. Earlier, she reported that about half of the COVID-19 vaccinations produced in the European Union are exported to ensure that 70% of the population is immunized by the middle of this year. Despite the steady morbidity increase, many European countries are now talking about getting out of the pandemic and lifting most restrictive measures. Italy, which at one time became the first COVID-19 hotbed in Europe, announced that the protective mask will no longer be mandatory on the street. Denmark, Great Britain and Sweden have almost completely abandoned the restrictions. The latter generally declared the coronavirus pandemic over at the level of anti-covid prohibitions. Swedish Health Minister Lena Hallengren said that COVID-19 will no longer be considered a threat to society. The government of the Scandinavian country explains this by the fact that vaccination and the spread of Omicron made the course of the disease milder and reduced mortality. “Knowledge about this pandemic allows us to say that it is over. This is not the end, but in terms of the response to the pandemic and restrictions, it is,” the official stressed. In Moldova, the incidence has also declined, more precisely, it has stopped reaching peaks. However, the daily increase, which has almost halved to an average of 3 thousand cases per day, still remains extremely high for our country. In total, 477.5 thousand people have already fallen ill with a new type of coronavirus in Moldova, 10,866 of them have died. Almost 43 thousand people are infected at the moment. More than 3 thousand patients were hospitalized, of which about 230 people are in extremely serious condition and 37 are on ALV. About 150 people working in the healthcare system get infected every day, and doctors account for a third of these cases. COVID-units are full. Omicron does not spare the unvaccinated, and mortality continues to grow: compared to the previous week, it increased by more than 11%. “It’s a nightmare, we practically can’t take a break, because there are so many patients. The medical staff is exhausted, we all want to go on vacation, but we can’t, because there are not enough of us,” the doctors of the Institute of Emergency Medicine intensive care unit tell. Despite a significant decrease in the rate of spread of the virus, there is no need to talk about stabilization of the situation. Firstly, experts predict a new wave of morbidity, considering more contagious mutations of omicron in the country being discovered – BA.1 and BA.2. And secondly, the National Agency of Public Health reports a potentially serious increase in COVID-19 due to the return of February 7 students of schools and lyceums to classes with physical presence. The level of immunization among adolescents is extremely low – only about 7 thousand children over 12 years old have been vaccinated. So, the fears of an explosive increase in morbidity among both students and their family members and teaching staff are quite reasonable.