In the spring, the eyes of the whole world were on Israel as it began to roll the ball over the vaccine. The campaign was so successful that the country chose to remove almost all restrictions. The result? A Big waveMore important than the previous one. The Israeli government has tightened measures and a Third dose for all adults.
On July 19, the United Kingdom abolished most activities and celebrated in style
Independence Day (Independence Day). If the country appears to be returning to a certain level of normalcy, there are still more than 3 million new cases from September. More than 100,000 Britons are infected each week and more than 500 die from COVID-19. If the number of deaths and hospitalizations is lower than previous waves, we begin to see an increase again.
Learning to live with the epidemic does not mean the crisis is over, recalls Christina Jaroski, a professor of social and preventive medicine at the University of Montreal School of Public Health.
Israel and the UK said to each other: “This is under control [grâce à la vaccination], That would be the end in itself. “I think we were a little optimistic.
To Dr. John Liu, CHU Sainte-Justin’s pediatrician and former international head of Medicines Sans Frontieres, World
Already living naturally With the virus for 18 months
As appropriate as they can.
The question we need to ask ourselves today is: Have we created a balance between measures and population protection? Can we make more operations more flexible?, This professor specializes in epidemiological and health emergencies at McGill University.
The future is hard to predict, but two experts say even in the countries we have re-chosen
Normal, Sometimes significant, may be eruptions, which may force some health measures to resume.
We can see situations where we need to open and close regions in the next decade, and we need to constantly monitor, Says Mrs. Jarovsky.
Lives with virus … but with restrictions
The Denmark On September 10 COVID-19 said no
A disease that is no longer a major threat to society And he was able to pass
Thanks to the use of the vaccine on the other side of the infection. We have too Abandoned vaccine passport. Announced announcements in Portugal, Chile, Norway, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, New Zealand and Australia.
Ms. Zarovsky understands why these countries want to change their strategy at this point.
There are other challenges, such as the economy, the well-being of the population and other health problems that cannot be ignored, such as cancer and the opioid crisis., She points out.
Dr. Liu agrees, but warns of this
Return to normal Must be done very carefully.
When we say we need to learn to live with the virus, it does not mean that we should eliminate all health activities.
Also, many countries that have relaxed their restrictions generally have certain activities, such as wearing a mask or regular screening. They also warned people that the situation could get worse.
For example, Norway continues to impose restrictions on large crowds that wear masks in public places and show evidence of vaccination in bars and restaurants.
Although life has returned to normal, the epidemic is not over, Prime Minister Erna Solberg recalled on September 24. There will always be sick people, which is why everyone should be vaccinated.
Since October 1, Portugal has lifted most of its restrictions, mandating the wearing of masks in public places and vaccinating passports only for major events and travelers. The Prime Minister announced that the country was entering a stage where citizens had to defend themselves against Govt-19.
The Portuguese government thanked its citizens for their efforts during the epidemic, but warned that the new regulations could be implemented quickly if the situation changed.
Drop the COVID-zero approach
New Zealand, Australia and Singapore have had the lowest cases since the outbreak. These countries quickly closed their borders and imposed severe locks on the small sign. Their strategy is govt-zero, reducing the number of cases in their country to almost zero.
But recently Melbourne, Australia was hit by a huge explosion, forcing the government to admit that severe locks had failed to control the virus. Then the country decidedDrop its COVID-zero strategy, Indicates her presence
Achieving is incredibly difficult Due to infection of the delta variant.
New Zealand has also decided to abandon this strategy after abandoning it Explosions in Auckland could not be controlled.
According to Dr. Liu, the Covid-Zero strategic window is now closed. The borders of these countries cannot be closed indefinitely.
Ms. Zarovsky, for her part, believes that the Govit-Zero strategy was the hardest target at the outset of the epidemic because the virus quickly spread itself widely throughout the world.
This option was only available to geographically isolated countries such as Australia and New Zealand. If this Govt-Zero strategy is successful for 18 months,
These nations must now mourn and live with the virus, Says Zarowski.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacintha Artern said she did not regret implementing the Govt-Zero strategy because it saved lives.
Removal strategy [COVID-zéro] The beginning is important because we do not have a vaccine. Now that we have it, it will change the way we do things, He told a news conference.
Their strategy would have been successful in minimizing the impact on their population.
They had a hundred deaths, which is very different from the 11,000 deaths in Quebec, Christina Jarovsky insists.
Only China, Hong Kong and Taiwan still use the Govt-Zero approach. On the other hand, the drastic measures imposed by these countries to achieve this, sometimes even drastic, will not be accepted anywhere else in the world.
Focus on higher vaccination rates
As the vaccination campaign progresses rapidly in many Western countries, there is increasing pressure on the authorities to remove the restrictions associated with the epidemic.
But experts warn that no country can escape further eruptions before thenAchieving 80% or 90% vaccination rate Of the population (including children, not yet eligible for vaccination). At the moment, only Portugal has reached this goal.
Turkey, for example, has a vaccine rate of just 55%, and the number of infections skyrocketed when the government lifted most of its restrictions in July.
In Singapore, where the epidemic was first brought under control through massive screenings and border closures, authorities announced in late August that restrictions would be lifted when 80% of its population was vaccinated.
But despite the 83% vaccination rate before September, the number of new cases has started to double every week and the country now has the highest infection rate in the world, forcing the government to reintroduce some restrictions. In the last 28 days, 98% of infections are not severe, which is a sign that the high vaccination rate is protecting the people of Singapore.
The government expected it: after all, their country
Covid-innocent, I.e., very few Singaporeans have been affected since the onset of the epidemic due to the Govt-Zero strategy.
Strategies need to be constantly developed
Dr. John Liu has said since the onset of the epidemic: There is no perfect cure for this epidemic. We need a mill-fuel strategy: a super position of various measures to control new explosions. In addition, you should not be afraid to change it if your strategy no longer works.
Infection is a great lesson for humility. Because in the beginning we realize what works, and in two or three months, it doesn’t work either.
He adds that Canadians, Americans and Europeans are not accustomed to living with the uncertainty of a major crisis.
This kind of restraint occurred to me while working in humanitarian crises [comme l’épidémie d’Ebola]This former international president of Medicines Sans Frontiers recalled. We live permanently with imperfect solutions, in a state of permanent insecurity. We are [les pays du G7] Not accustomed to living in this state of uncertainty, it creates a lot of confusion and paralysis in various stages.
That is why Dr. Liu argues with extreme caution, even in countries with high vaccination rates and declining cases. By facilitating measures that are implemented very quickly, there is no doubt that these countries will have to step back at some point, a gesture that people cannot accept.
He recalled that although the situation was better in some places, the epidemic was far from over in the world. Dr. Liu says the spread of the virus elsewhere in the world could lead to the suffering of millions of people. He adds that unrestricted exchange anywhere else in the world could lead to the emergence of new variants that are more difficult to control than in Delta.
We live in a global ecosystem and what happens elsewhere affects us here. The virus has no boundaries.