Vaccines not only take care of those who get vaccinated, but also support community health with so-called herd immunity
The world is immersed in the COVID-19 pandemic. The World Health Organization (WHO) and its partners are working together on the response and are racing to find one vaccine that can shovel the most complex health situation in recent years. Vaccines are preparations formed by pathogenic microorganisms (lifeless or modified) that, when supplied, stimulate the production of antibodies that protect against contact with different infectious diseases.
A very important fact is that not only does it take care of those who are vaccinated, but they also favor community health with the so named herd immunity, since vaccinated people provide indirect protection to people who are not.
Vaccines protect us against deadly diseases, therefore saving lives, especially children. In countries where the entire population is routinely vaccinated, many diseases have been eradicated or their incidence greatly decreased. Examples include tetanus, diphtheria, mumps, measles, (whooping cough), meningitis, and polio, among other conditions.
Over the past year, there has been a lot of talk about the production of the COVID-19 vaccine. Today it is already a palpable reality and according to WHO reports, to date there are more than 319 million people who have received doses of the various configured strains.
This phenomenon is especially important because it allows protect groups most at risk of presenting complications from COVID-19, such as health professionals, those over 60 years of age and adults with previous conditions (diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, chronic kidney disease, cirrhosis, HIV, patients on the waiting list for transplantation of solid organs, solid organ transplants, people with disabilities residents of homes, residences and small homes.
But not everything related to vaccination and health goes through the Coronavirus. Starting in April, the 2021 strains will be available to be vaccinated against the flu. And there arises a new opportunity to generate immunity. Aligned to its purpose “We take care that people take care of themselves”, Farmacity will have available flu shots, and it will be possible to get vaccinated without a shift, giving priority to those who have a scheduled shift to avoid waiting and accumulating clients and patients in pharmacies given the current context. In addition, digital shifts will be enabled and it will have personalized attention and advice from its more than 600 pharmaceutical professionals and nurses.
In Argentina, it is a priority to reverse the current low coverage that reduces the possibility of keeping vaccine-preventable diseases controlled or eliminated. In this framework, vaccination has been defined by health authorities as “a public health priority” that must be sustained regardless of the phase in which each jurisdiction is. It is essential to intensify the vaccination in the prioritized groups, complying with the vaccination recommendations in the context of a pandemic.
For this and before going to any health center, it is important to know that:
• It is a priority to get vaccinated against COVID-19. If they receive notification of the COVID vaccination date, the pneumococcal and / or influenza vaccination must be deferred and COVID-19 prioritized.
• If you have received a complete schedule for COVID, wait 14 days for influenza and / or pneumococcal vaccination (which can be given together).
• For those who received the first dose against COVID-19, it is suggested to wait to receive the second dose against COVID-19 and then 15 days for influenza and / or pneumococcal vaccination (which can be given together).
• For people who are on the waiting list without a defined date for the COVID-19 vaccine, it is recommended that they receive the pneumococcal and / or influenza vaccination.
• People who have already received the influenza vaccine and receive notification to be vaccinated against COVID-19 are advised to defer this vaccination to allow a space of 14 days between vaccinations whenever possible. Otherwise, proceed with both vaccinations.
It is important to attend to the vaccination schedule and keep our vaccines up to date, especially in the current times.
That is why today more than ever the flu shot and the COVID-19 vaccine they are great allies for health care.