Covid-19 cases in Córdoba increased by 200% in one month. Regardless, the increase is off a low base. Additionally, the impact on hospitalization was minimal.
Sources from the provincial health ministry say the virus that caused the pandemic in 2020 and 2021 does not currently cause most respiratory infections, whether in children or adults.
According to data from the Epidemiological Region of Córdoba, 159 positive Sars-Cov-2 diagnoses were reported in the last week of August. The number registered during the 35th epidemiological week (August 27 to September 2) increased by 200% compared to the same period last month (53 reported cases).
In any case, the significant increase had a smaller impact on hospitalizations. During epidemiological week 35 (end of August), 8 people were hospitalized with a diagnosis of Sars-Cov-2, while by the end of July this number rose to 13 in the province.
If you compare the current numbers to last week’s numbers, you do see an increase.
News of Gov. Juan Schiaretti’s recent confirmed coronavirus case also underscores the virus’s survivability.
Covid-19: Who it affects
Laura López, head of epidemiology at the province’s Ministry of Health, reported that part of the increase is due to more people coming in to get tested.
For example, 30% of people under 50 who were tested (and tested positive) did not meet the diagnostic criteria. Today, we look for and analyze respiratory viruses in people over 50 years old, people with comorbidities or risk factors, and anyone hospitalized for it.
Increased testing partly explains the rise in cases. Falling temperatures and people spending more time in enclosed places also have an impact. The last two conditions increase the spread of all respiratory viruses.
“Many of the cases are under 50 years old and have no history of dangerous pathology. One might suspect that they are patients coming for consultation, perhaps because they need a medical certificate. These are the numbers we are analyzing,” explained Lopez.
Covid-19: Impact on hospitalization
In the last week of August, 44 adult hospitalizations for this reason were reported, a 45% decrease from the number registered during the same period the previous month. Only 18% of patients currently bedridden with respiratory infections have been diagnosed with Sars-Cov-2.
Among adults, influenza cases are also declining “as expected for this time of year,” Lopez reported.
“If we analyze the epidemiological curve, Covid-19 has a jagged peak and decline. Although there is an increase today, it is still lower than the values recorded at the beginning of the year,” he added.
Today, demand on the health system, both for consultations and hospitalizations, is increasing and the situation is tense due to long waits by guards. However, it is not Sars-Cov-2 that is prevalent among patients.
“Covid-19 is not currently having a significant impact on the health system. There is also no increase in specific inquiries. Yes, this is caused by other respiratory viruses,” he added.
what happens to kids
The number of hospitalizations for acute respiratory infections (ARI) in children under 5 is falling, according to the Department of Health. In the last week of August, a total of 30 notices were registered in the public system, a 37% decrease from the number registered in the previous seven days.
Sars-Cov-2 is also not prevalent as a source of infection among children hospitalized with respiratory infections. Today, parainfluenza predominates among patients, and this pathogen often causes pneumonia. This is followed by metapneumovirus, adenovirus (which can also cause gastroenteritis) and influenza. Finally, Covid-19.
Lopez recalled that there were vaccines on the calendar to prevent complications such as Covid-19 (one shot every six months for high-risk groups and once a year for other groups). Flu and whooping cough vaccinations are also available.
Covid-19: Impact of new variants
The Omicron variant has replaced all other variants and is responsible for all coronavirus cases in Córdoba today.
The latest real-time surveillance, conducted by the Provincial Ministry of Health and the Anlis Malbrán Laboratory, reported the detection of the EG.5 variant of interest in 12.2% of cases.
The XBB sublineage was found in the remaining 41 samples analyzed by molecular diagnostics in August.
It remains to be seen how the new subvariant of interest (EG.5), which has caused an increase in cases in other countries, followed by its ability to circulate more, will behave.