Friday, May 27

Do you fear being infected by omicron? 12 short and clear answers that sweep the internet

The contagion curve of the omicron variant continues to rise although, according to the data provided by the Autonomous Communities, the cumulative incidence – 3,192.46 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, it is slowing down.

The ómicron variant has been imposed in our country. Most of those infected have mild symptomatology and, is that, the risk of being hospitalized by SARS-CoV-2 has been drastically reduced thanks to the effectiveness of vaccines.

In Spain, 38,114,506 people have received the complete regimen, which translates into more than 86 million doses administered and many people protected from serious illness and death.

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The fear of this strain, which multiplied daily, was made clear last Christmas with the record sales of antigen tests in Spanish pharmacies: seven million self-diagnostic tests.

the family doctor John Manuel Jimenez, born in Canillas de Aceituno (Málaga) and who practices in the capital, has published in Facebook a post with the twelve questions that every infected person -or close contact- is asking after the explosion of infections by omicron.

The doctor, who is also the author of three literary works, has written this letter “to help people with COVID or suspected of COVID”. The publication on the social network, which has accumulated more than 3,000 interactions and a thousand comments, has been shared by more than 3,000 Internet users.

Twelve questions and answers to doubts that arise two months after the appearance of omicron that, although everything seems to indicate that it causes a mild illness, Spain continues to account for more than a hundred deaths daily. And many countries are worse off. However, a study carried out in South Africa and published in the British Medical Journal suggests that the risk of hospitalization by omicron is 70% lower compared to other variants of COVID-19 such as Delta, Gamma or Beta.

1. What COVID viral strain is now circulating in Spain?

Almost all COVID viruses circulating at the moment are of the omicron variety (highly contagious, but with a poor prognosis). The Delta variety already circulates very little (less contagious but more capable of causing serious complications).

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2. Who has been infected from the beginning of December until now with one of these two COVID variants?

Half of Spaniards have already been infected with absolute certainty (23 million people), and we will end January-February with 80%-90% of Spaniards infected. It’s unstoppable.

3. Are the symptoms of this new sixth wave serious?

The vast majority are mild, very mild or even infections without symptoms. This is mainly due to two reasons:

4. Who are now the people most likely to be admitted to the Hospital Plant due to serious complications of COVID?

There are four groups of patients:

5. Who are the people now who are needing ICU admissions due to very serious, or even fatal, complications from COVID?

80% of the people admitted right now in all the ICUs in Spain belong to this minority group of 7% of the unvaccinated population.

The remaining 20% ​​of those admitted to ICUs correspond to correctly vaccinated people, but with a lower response to the vaccine: individuals with chronic pathologies, immunocompromised or elderly.

Almost all those admitted to the ICUs are infected by the Delta variety.

6. Has the way of dealing with suspected COVID infection changed?

Yes. Since last December 29 there is a new national protocol that is based on an incontrovertible reality:

The health services of Primary Care and Hospitals cannot attend AT THE SAME TIME to 23 million Spaniards with COVID, and another 23 million who are contacts of the previous ones.

We are collapsed.

Not even with the full staff of toilets would it be possible to attend to all Spaniards at the same time; much less with a very significant percentage of doctors and nurses on sick leave due to COVID, who cannot be replaced because there is no one left in Spain to hire.

7. What do I do if I am a contact of a person who has tested positive, but I do not have symptoms and, in addition, I am correctly vaccinated?

Any. Absolutely nothing. You do not have to do anything.

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Keep doing your normal life, and don’t forget the mask.

8. Yes, doctor. But I am not very calm. Also, I have a slight itchy throat. I prefer to go to the pharmacy and take a test.

Okay. It’s your decision. If you get negative, do what I said above. If you test positive… you have just earned seven days of isolation at home (with or without sick leave, depending on the case).

But you don’t need to come to the Health Center to confirm the positivity of the pharmacy’s antigen tests. If they test positive, you are positive.

As much as you insist, we are not going to ask you for a confirmatory PCR. Sorry. Final point.

9. What do I do if I am a contact of a person who has tested positive, but I do not have symptoms, and I am not vaccinated?

In your case, because you are not vaccinated, you have to do as in the first wave: directly seven days of isolation at home (with or without sick leave).

You do not have to come to the Health Center to tell your case, nor to the Hospital.

You do not need to take any tests, neither in the pharmacy nor in the Health Center (the result would not matter: you have to isolate yourself for seven days, in any case).

Do not insist on the Health Center asking for tests: they do not correspond to you. But if you don’t stay calm, go to the pharmacy.

10. What do I do if I have tested positive in an antigen test or in a PCR?

There are two possibilities, which are identical in vaccinated and unvaccinated:

– If the symptoms are mild or absent… complete seven days of isolation at home (with or without sick leave) without the need to consult anyone. Well, unless you are an elite tennis player. In that case, go to Australia and do what comes out of the triumphal arch.

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– If the symptoms seem serious to you (high fever that does not subside, shortness of breath, suffocation, etc.) … go to the Hospital Emergency Department so that they can decide whether or not to admit you.

11. Doctor: We have COVID cases in my house, but no one has called us to ask how we are doing or to trace the contacts.

In the first place, since last December 29 there is no longer any screening in Spain: we are all infected or about to become infected. No need to track anything anymore. Infections are community. Not in buds.

Nobody will call you to study the contacts.

Secondly, home follow-up calls are being prioritized for older COVID patients or with chronic risk pathologies. If you are young and healthy, we may not call you. We are very sorry, but that’s the way things are.

If your symptoms are mild or absent… sofa and Neflitx at home. If they are serious… to the Hospital.

12. Anything to remember for the next two months?

Yes. That we are in the midst of a national emergency. The self-care and common sense are the basic tools in these crucial moments.

Use the Health (public or private) only if strictly necessary. Don’t yell at us, we’re not deaf. Few, yes; but not deaf.

Do not “warm up” the long queues anymore, because the sick arrive already quite “hot”.

Do not repeat more that they do not pick up the phone: we already know it. There are not enough lines for so many calls or hands to pick up.

We are working very hard, although it may not seem like it to you. We don’t need your applause, but we do need your respect.

And if you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem.

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