Walk-in flu and COVID vaccinations have ended with a total of 5,923 doses administered. This campaign has been running for a week in the afternoon and now Extremadurans who want to protect themselves from both diseases can call their health centers until January 31.
Health Minister Sara García Espada has said the door-to-door campaign will not be extended, although she said it will be launched earlier next year because of its “success.”
People of Extremadura responded to the call of the Extremadura Health Service (SES) to receive influenza and coronavirus vaccinations in the afternoon without an appointment. However, doctors and nurses consulted by this newspaper said that this measure came a little late and did not help much in calculating the number of injections.
For influenza, it represents 1% of total doses since immunization began on October 16. Between January 11 and 19, people in Extremadura were vaccinated against influenza at 11 health centers in the region between 5 pm and 8 pm. According to the Ministry of Health, they had received 3,043 doses of influenza vaccine, That is, about 434 times a day.
During the entire campaign, which lasted until January 10, before the start of this extraordinary immunization drive, Extremadura had administered 247,954 vaccinations, despite long queues of people waiting to be vaccinated at health centers last week. But the truth is, that number doesn’t contribute much. It helps protect people and health experts believe it should have been implemented earlier.
does not prevent infection
The extraordinary campaign comes amid a surge in respiratory infections. Last week, the incidence rate rose to 813 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, compared with 664 cases the week before. However, according to the latest figures provided by the SES, hospital admissions have increased from 667 to 475. Last Thursday, January 18th.
Technical staff from the Ministry of Health said that when the peak of infections is expected this week or next, it must be taken into account that the influenza vaccine does not exert its protective effect 14 days after vaccination. Ministry of Health.
As a result, many people who responded to the SES call to get vaccinated without an appointment were largely motivated by fears of a resurgence of respiratory infections, which take two weeks for the body to develop immune protection against the flu virus.
The campaign is in the midst of a viral rebound and protection won’t be felt until two weeks later
Furthermore, it must be taken into account that vaccination against influenza does not prevent infection. It happens just like COVID-19 in that it prevents the worst symptoms but doesn’t stop the virus from entering the body.
Regarding COVID-19 vaccinations, the SES provided 2,880 doses in the afternoon during a walk-in special event, having previously administered 153,805 doses.
This means that the extraordinary immunization campaign against COVID-19 accounted for 1.8% of the total doses, slightly more than the flu vaccine doses.
Flu campaigns, with or without an appointment, are targeted at people who are most vulnerable to infection.
This means that the following groups can receive doses: residents of social health centers and the population aged 80 and over, the population aged over 60, prisoners in centers and residences for persons with disabilities and long-term residents in institutions.
As for people under 60, they must have a medical condition that increases their risk of getting the flu or coronavirus.
Additionally, pregnant women, women in any trimester of pregnancy, and women who have not been vaccinated after delivery, within six months of delivery, and during pregnancy can also receive the vaccine.
Likewise, people who live with someone who has serious medical complications may also receive this dose if they have these conditions.
Essential professionals in critical and essential services must also be vaccinated, namely personnel from public and private health and social health centers, as well as staff of essential public services such as security forces, civil protection and firefighters.
Regarding influenza vaccination, this year it is also recommended that children aged 6 months to 5 years old and smokers under 60 years old be vaccinated against influenza.