According to the National Center of Epidemiology, Prevention and Disease Control (Minsa) of the Ministry of Health, as of August 26, 22 people had died from pneumonia and a total of 2,785 people were suffering from pneumonia in Huanuco province.
However, these deaths could have been prevented if they had been vaccinated against pneumococcal bacteria, a type of bacteria that can cause serious infections such as pneumonia (infection of the lungs), meningitis (infection of the membranes surrounding the brain), bacteremia disease (blood infection). ) and other less serious but common conditions such as sinusitis and otitis media.
Pneumococci are the second cause of community-acquired pneumonia requiring hospitalization. Although pneumonia is a vaccine-preventable disease, 81% of deaths from pneumococcal infection are caused by pneumonia. It is spread through contact with someone who is sick when coughing or sneezing.
As of 2023, the country has had 66,549 cases and 1,979 deaths, Minsa reported. In Huánuco, 2,785 incidents and 22 deaths have been recorded.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends vaccination with the thirteen-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, which protects against 13 of the more than 100 existing serotypes.
The pneumococcal vaccine is free, safe and of high quality, a Minsa spokesperson said: The vaccine is available in 8,000 health facilities in the country for high-risk groups, girls and boys under 5 years old, in 3 doses (2, 4 and 12 months), adults above 60 years of age (single dose) and patients with comorbidities such as cardiovascular problems, asthma, diabetes, hypertension, obesity, etc.
In this sense, Ministry of Health personnel urge parents to take their children as well as the elderly to get vaccinated against respiratory diseases that can lead to pneumonia with fatal consequences.