Spain wants to “lead” in the EU the debate towards the ‘flu’ of the pandemic

  • Darias affirms that it is “timely” to open the “debate” and prepare the way to have the change of surveillance ready when the sixth wave ends, despite the opposition of the WHO

Although the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) have warned that it is precipitate propose that covid begin to be treated as a endemic disease, given the contagiousness of the omicron variant, which could infect more than the European population in the coming weeks, the Spanish Government has insisted this Wednesday that it is “timely and necessary & rdquor; open the debate, in line with the thesis maintained on Monday by Pedro Sánchez.

Moreover, the Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, has specified that Spain “wants lead the debate” in the bosom of EU, where, as he has underlined, there are some countries that also welcome the start of designing the transition towards a ‘flu’ of the virus, which would mean stop reporting all cases daily and carry out surveillance through sentinel centers, among other possible changes.

However, many specialists and medical societies (not all) consider unwise embrace this hopeful message in the midst of the sixth wave and when the peak is not yet in sight, despite the fact that according to the Minister of Health “the speed of growth has slowed down in the last week & rdquor ;.

After the sixth wave

Between the autonomous communities There are also administrations that see it necessary to start preparing the ground for a new notification and surveillance system, such as Castilla La-Mancha and Madrid, although it is shared that for its implementation, it is first necessary to wait for subside the sixth wave. “We have to adapt the system to a new surveillance once the sixth wave is over, Never before“, Darias clarified after the weekly meeting of the Interterritorial Council.

The minister has refused to advance details on the new strategy in which the experts of the alert paper are already working. First, he argued, it has to be agreed upon in this group, in the Interterritorial Council and in international forums. However, he predicted that the “transition” between an “emergency surveillance”, where it is a question of counting all the cases, or another “sustained”, of more “quality” and “compatible with the monitoring of other viruses” will be “complex“.

Vaccine coverage

“We have to go calmly, but moving towards new scenarios” because it is “the citizenry that requires” that the authorities anticipate “with prudence and caution but noting that we are facing a different stage, which has to do with the very high vaccination coverage, in which Spain is a benchmark & ​​rdquor ;, he stressed.

In this regard, he has advanced that this Thursday the Public Health Commission will study extending the booster dose, which until now is supplied to those over 40 years of age and those immunized with AstraZeneca and Janssen, among other groups.


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Thanks precisely to vaccination, the explosive incidence that ómicron is leaving is not translating into a comparable level of hospitalizations or deaths. According to Darias, only 2% of those infected between December 13 and 26 have needed hospital care, compared to 6% in the previous two months. And the foreseeable thing, according to Health, is that the income does not exceed that caused by the third wave, after Christmas 2020.

Likewise, the minister explained that the negotiation with Pfizer for the purchase of 344,000 units of its medicine against covid has culminated.

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