Peruvian health authorities Wednesday announced a contingency plan amid an increase in cases of COVID-19 in the regions of Lima, Arequipa (south), and Loreto (north).
In view of this situation, local experts recommended continuing with biosecurity measures such as vaccination, the use of masks in high-risk areas, hand washing, and social distancing.
If we want to keep this pandemic under control we must maintain biosecurity measures, and the main weapon against COVID-19 is vaccination. We have no excuse for failing to apply these preventive measures, EsSalud epidemiologist Edwin Neciosup explained.
The South American country's EsSalud social security agency has been reinforcing some strategies such as house-to-house vaccination, through health brigades that travel to different parts of Lima and other places to inject both the insured and uninsured population. Healthcare staff have also been deployed at specific locations so that people can complete their vaccination schedules, it was reported.
The increase in the number of cases follows the lifting of the state of emergency, which eliminated the mandatory wear of facemasks indoors and on public transportation. The Government nonetheless recommended people continue getting vaccinated to avoid the severe phase of this disease.
Peru's Health Ministry (Minsa) has applied 85,309,442 doses of COVID-19 vaccine (26.83 million first doses, 25.75 million second doses, 20.91 million third doses and 5.54 million fourth doses).
The World Health Organization (WHO) said Wednesday in its weekly report that COVID-19 vaccination for people over 60 has been prioritized as they are one of the groups that are at highest risk of severe disease, hospitalization and death if infected with the COVID-19 virus.
The WHO also admitted that while we have seen a reduction in performance of vaccines against newer variants, studies show that the COVID-19 vaccines hold up well over time against severe disease, hospitalization and death if infected with the virus that causes COVID-19.
Meanwhile, Peru's Minsa also reported 3,299 cases of monkeypox Wednesday. So far 3,086 patients have been discharged, while 213 remain under observation. Most cases (2,523) were detected in Lima but the malady was said to be present in at least 20 regions nationwide.
The country began Oct. 7 vaccinating people with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). The campaign seeks to immunize some 14,000 patients eligible for their two doses at an interval of 28 days.
The Ministry this week also issued its Technical Health Standard for the Epidemiological Surveillance of Monkeypox in Peru handbook, which has been released in the El Peruano official gazette. The publication sets forth the guidelines for the surveillance and epidemiological investigation of cases and contacts of monkeypox at the national level by the National Epidemiological Surveillance System (Sinave).