“Data from Ómicron in the country, just the tip of the iceberg”

Before the announcement of the increase in the number of cases of people infected by the Omicron variant in our country, specialists consulted indicated that the more than 20 cases only form a small tip of the iceberg of the true situation, they also advanced that it is impossible to stop a fourth wave.

The Undersecretary of Health, Hugo López-Gatell reported that until December 20, 23 cases of this variant had been detected in the country, which are found in three entities, Mexico City (16), Edomex (six) and in Tamaulipas (one). He also explained that a possible positive sample was being investigated in Sinaloa as well as three more in the capital.

Samuel Ponce de León, coordinator of the University Health Research Program at UNAM, indicated that the numbers presented by health authorities are a distant reflection of reality.

“What we are experiencing at the moment is an extensive transmission that we are not seeing, because indeed the Omicron variant has a less aggressive clinical presentation, however, once it reaches sufficient numbers of infections it will cause a great demand for hospital care” , he warned.

For his part, Malaquías López Cervantes, an academic from the Department of Public Health of the UNAM Faculty of Medicine, said that Ómicron’s progress is worrying, in addition to stating that this SARS-CoV-2 mutation could “find its way ”In people who have not been inoculated or who have an incomplete scheme.

“It is extremely worrying because if we look at the total figures (…) we have many millions of people either partially vaccinated or not vaccinated (…) but also, although most of the time it was a mild infection, we cannot rule out that there are severe cases, serious and deaths ”, referred the academic.

Until yesterday, December 21, some 72 million 263,651 people had been vaccinated with a complete schedule of vaccines against Covid-19, which is equivalent to 81% of the total universe of people aged 18 years and over in the country (89 million 484,507).

Another 9 million 632,875 (11% of the total) have half of the scheme and there were 7 million 587,981 (8%) people who did not have a single dose.

The undersecretary of health pointed out that 70% of the people infected with Ómicron in Mexico did not have any vaccine against Covid-19, so he called on the population to complete or start their vaccination schedule.

“Mexico lives in a parallel universe (…) where it seems that nothing is happening, it seems that it comes to promote social activities instead of restricting it and we are playing with something extremely dangerous (…) All the conditions for a fourth wave to take place ”, mentioned López Cervantes.

Both specialists agreed that the fourth wave is difficult to stop, however, they indicated that with a prevention campaign by the federal government, the number of people infected on these dates could be mitigated.

“We are not in time to stop the fourth wave, but we are in time to increase prevention campaigns by the federal government, what they are going to do is that there are fewer infections with the speed that there could be them, otherwise the scenario will be of an exponential increase in the number of cases and that would put the health system in trouble, “added Ponce de León.

No travel restrictions

Yesterday the head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (SRE), Marcelo Ebrard, participated in a meeting called by the United States Department of State with the aim of coordinating an international strategy against Ómicron.

The SRE reported that at the meeting the Mexican government announced that “it is working on a booster vaccination plan for the eligible population and that there are no plans to impose restrictions on domestic travel so far.”

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