Leiden, December 5, 2020, 3:46 p.m.
Minister Hugo de Jong hopes he will be able to vaccinate the first people against the coronavirus on January 4. According to LUMC epidemiologist Fritz Rosendal, it will take some time for the vaccine to help keep the virus alive. “In the first instance, the elderly are vaccinated. It is a choice for the safety of those people, but it does not help to inhibit the virus. “That is why I advocated that all people under the age of 30 be vaccinated first.”
The first vaccines are currently being tested and may be approved this month. Minister De Jong (Public Health) hopes to be able to start vaccination on January 4. Rosendal, an epidemiologist at LUMC in Leiden, called them good news. “Once people are vaccinated, it helps stop the spread of the virus. “In fact, you can see this as an additional measure by the cabinet,” Rosendaal told media partner Omrop West.
However, according to Rosendall, it will take some time before the effects become visible. “The cabinet has chosen to vaccinate vulnerable groups first. This protects these people and will cause a drop in the death rate. But this is also a group of people who have a hard time transmitting the virus. These are people under the age of thirty and the elderly aged 50 to 65. “That’s why I insisted on starting vaccinations here, because then you will make sure that the virus is inhibited as soon as possible and that life can return to normal.”
According to Rosendal, approximately 60 percent of the population will need to be vaccinated before the virus can be extinguished. “The vaccine works just like the group immunity that Prime Minister Mark Ruth talked about at the beginning. It was then said that 60 to 70 percent of the population should have a crown. About 10 percent of the population is now infected. “If you assume they can no longer get it or transmit it, then about 60 percent still need to be vaccinated to contain the virus.”
However, according to the expert, the measures for the corona can be relaxed earlier. “Once part of the population is vaccinated, fewer people will be infected and it will pass faster in the vaccinated groups,” Rosendal explained. “You can actually see the vaccine as an additional measure. These are now also set up to prevent the virus from spreading to certain groups. “It works the same with the vaccine.”
Indirect vaccination obligation
With the vaccine, people who have been vaccinated may do more than people who are still waiting for the vaccine. “There are different options for dealing with this. You can imagine that people who have proof that they have been vaccinated are given certain freedoms that others do not yet have. “There are people who think it’s a good idea, but I can imagine people being against this indirect vaccination obligation.”
It is now especially important for the government to ensure that the organization is ready to vaccinate everyone as soon as possible. Rosendal has confidence in this. “With the flu vaccine, GPs already have a lot of experience with vaccination. I am already over sixty and I injected her last week. I think I was out again in three minutes. “The expertise is there, now it just matters that this is set up correctly.”
Daily figures are uncertain
The vaccine is a way out of the coronary crisis. Until the vaccine is available, we will have to deal with restrictive measures. The number of new infections is slowly decreasing and varies every day. The RIVM reported 4,942 new coronary infections on Wednesday. This is significantly more than 4063 new infections on Tuesday. That was significantly less than Monday. According to the LUMC epidemiologist, daily figures should not be overstated. “Daily figures are not reliable enough, you should not look at it.
The Leiden epidemiologist explains: “It’s a technical story, but the shorter the period, the greater the chance of fluctuations. If you compare the numbers every half hour, you will notice a significant reduction in the lunch break, for example. That is why it is best to look at the weekly numbers and here we see a slight decrease. “
Hardly any space
Rosendal herself believes that the number of hospital admissions is even more important than the number of new infections every day. “Not everyone can be tested with complaints and you do not know if they will be tested with complaints on the first day or only after three or four days. “Hospitalization is safer because it contains fewer variables and people are usually admitted at the same time.”
The numbers make the doctor concerned about the period until the vaccine can be widely used. “The decline in the number of infections is not going as fast as expected. I find that scary. Because we hardly have room for a new top. I heard that some catering companies want to open in January. I would immediately send boa there. That is not responsible now. “We have much less freedom than in the summer.”
Leiden Society Crisis in Corona