“We need it, first problems between November and February”

“We need it, first problems between November and February”
“We need it, first problems between November and February”

They are the first to have been vaccinated against Covid and are the first to report cases of drops in immunity and infection (not serious) even if vaccinated. They are doctors, nurses and health workers, who together with the elderly and the most vulnerable were the first protagonists of the vaccination campaign, inaugurated in Italy on 28 December 2020. The first, therefore, to receive a double dose of the anti Covid vaccine. Today, for them, 10 months after the start of collective immunization, they need one third dose? The answer is yes, according to virologists and also according to the Ministry of Health which has already prepared a national plan to inject vaccine boosters. The immunization campaign worked because it led to a progressive decline in cases among doctors, nurses and the elderly. There were 265 infections in July. And then, in August, the infections in this category of people exploded reaching 1,800.

Some health workers are becoming infected: in the last 30 days, according to ISS data, there have been 1,377 cases of Sars-Cov-2 among health workers, which bring the total of infections in this category, from the beginning of the pandemic to today, to 144,400. In addition, the ISS reports always specify that these are workers exposed to risk: the example cited is that of operators who work in intensive care because «vaccinated earlier than those employed in other departments»). Healthcare professionals (doctors, nurses, health technicians, physiotherapists and midwives) will and are already receiving, but without obligation, the third dose of the vaccine. In Lombardy, we have already left. Operators (from doctors, nurses, Oss to professionals employed in pharmacies, parapharmacies and private practices) after at least 6 months from the completion of the primary vaccination cycle, can book the third dose.

Who is it for?

From 27 September 2021 the booster is available for different categories:

– in their eighties and over 80s
– staff and guests of residential facilities for the elderly
– health professions and health professionals
– people with high frailty motivated by concomitant / pre-existing pathologies aged 18 or over
– people aged 60 and over with concomitant pathology.

So far, 581,132 people have received a third dose, 7.67% of the population for which the additional dose is planned.

Operators exposed to risk

“After having increased by 600% in one month between July and August – he explains to Ansa Barbara Mangiacavalli, president of the Federation of Orders of Nursing Professions (Fnopi) – infections in the space of 30 days among health workers now seem to be decreasing, and in the last month they have been less than 1,400. This is due to the increase in vaccinations, the extension of the green pass, the suspension of those not vaccinated. But a substantial share of these workers particularly exposed to risk, despite having completed the vaccination with the 2 doses, continue to be infected with Sars-Cov-2, even if not in a serious form ». “We believe – continues Mangiacavalli – that sooner or later, all health professionals will have to take the third dose, in the interest of the individual and the community, especially the most fragile patients they care for”. A choice in line with scientific evidence.

Do I call back every year?

“After six months there is a percentage drop in the coverage offered by the anti-Covid vaccine, which in any case continues to guarantee a certain protection”, explains the virologist of the University of Milan Fabrizio Pregliasco, medical director of the Ircss Galeazzi. “Let us be satisfied with this residual capacity for the general population, evaluate how winter is going, and wait to revaccinate everyone” but “I think that the vaccination will then be proposed again from year to year, like the flu one for the categories at risk“. Meanwhile, the European Medicines Agency (Ema) has authorized the Patheon plant in Monza and the Catalent plant in Anagni for the production of Comirnaty, the anti Covid vaccine developed by BioNTech and Pfizer. The sites can become operational immediately and will produce the finished product, up to 85 million additional doses to supply the EU in 2021.

The English risk

«Getting to 90% of vaccinated people would guarantee a balance that could become good with the third dose, otherwise there is a British risk. The Green Pass effect demonstrates that it is still possible to convince oneself to vaccinate, that is to save lives, so be careful not to give the frightened to No Vax ». He says it Andrea Crisanti to the Press, according to which “we need to involve fearful, anxious and fragile people”. As in Great Britain, immunity will also drop in Italy, continues Crisanti, and therefore everyone needs the third dose of vaccine: «Solid studies show that after six months the protection against infection drops from 95 to 40% and against serious illness from 90 to 65. The recall is the completion of the protection. We don’t know how long it lasts, but in other vaccinations it lasts for years. Of course it poses further internal social and ethical problems compared to the third world, although I doubt that these vaccines are usable in disadvantaged countries. The peak of the vaccination campaign was between April and July, therefore from November to February we could have problems. For this we need the third dose ». Finally, the microbiologist comments on the latest Aifa report according to which out of over 84 million doses administered less than 0.02 percent had serious side effects, often resolved, and there were 16 related deaths: “Very low numbers that testify to safety vaccines, which cannot be considered experimental after billions of doses, while the treatments are palliative and empirical, so much so that people are still dying of Covid. Vaccines prevent serious illness, hospitalization and death ».

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