The regional secretary of Health and Civil Protection admitted today that the region “may be entering a second wave” due to the increase in cases of infection by SARS-CoV-2 and admissions to the dedicated hospital unit.

“More infected cases, more hospitalized, more cases in intensive care, all of this in 15 days”, highlighted Pedro Ramos in the presentation of the second phase of the campaign “The Pandemic is not over yet”, an initiative of the Regional Government through the Administration Institute of the IP-RAM Health.

In spite of that, in the archipelago, the positivity rate remains below 1%, explained the regional secretary, pointing out to be a good indicator, since “more than 5 thousand tests are carried out per week”.

Portugal is entering a fourth wave and these indicators are perfectly visible, mentioned the regional secretary, recalling that Madeira had only one wave, due to “a peak of cases during the months of January and February”.

Pedro Ramos stated that, despite the efforts of vaccination and testing, “there are people who continue to be infected”, which translates into the situation in the hospital, “which has gone from zero cases to seven inpatients, five in the polyvalent area and two in intensive care” in the last fortnight.

The government official also said that the Madeiran executive defends the new matrix proposal presented on Wednesday by a team of specialists.

The proposal, which resulted from a “team work” of specialists from the Instituto Superior Técnico and the Medical Association, complements the two existing indicators – incidence and transmissibility (Rt) – with three more: lethality, admissions to the ward and admissions to units intensive care unit (ICU).

“Madeira fully agrees with the new matrix presented and will adopt this new monitoring strategy not only of the pandemic activity, number of cases after seven days and also the corresponding Rt and then in the second pillar the severity of the pandemic expressed in its lethality, expressed in the number of admissions and the response capacity of the regional health service”, stressed the Secretary of Health and Civil Protection.

Reacting to the fact that the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) has moved the Autonomous Region of Madeira to the “orange” level due to the worsening of the covid-19 pandemic, Pedro Ramos asked for an “extra effort” from Madeirans.

The regional secretary admitted that the population has to make “an effort to return to the green corridor again in 15 days”, recalling “the importance of tourism in the Madeiran economy.

In Madeira, 258, 656 vaccines have already been administered, with 58.5% of the population vaccinated with the first dose and 43.4% with full vaccination.

The council of Porto Santo and Porto Moniz have already surpassed the group protection rate above 70%.

The Secretary of Health recalled that “vaccinated people cannot change their behavior”, explaining that the risk of infection remains, which can lead to an increase in the number of hospitalizations and, consequently, to an increase in deaths.

Pedro Ramos described this season as special “because students return, emigrants and tourism increases exponentially”, pointing to testing and vaccination as the solution to avoid a situation “like Christmas”.

In total, the region has already carried out 748,000 tests carried out to date, in an investment by the Regional Government in the amount of 33 million euros.

The second phase of the ‘The Pandemic Is Not Over’ campaign will have a special focus dedicated to bathing spaces, under the premise ‘Take a Safe Vacation’, which appeals to basic rules, such as the use of masks and hand disinfection, but also to regular vaccination and testing, even for those who have already been immunized.

The first phase of the ‘The Pandemic Is Not Over’ awareness campaign was launched on May 17th.

From Jornal Madeira

I guess it’s a vicious circle, we have kept the island pretty safe from the start, and it was only over Christmas and then into the start of the year we saw a sharp rise due to the South African Variant.

With probably about only 3% of the island having had Covid, then the new Delta Variant will spread, the only thing we have on our side is the vaccines which many of the over 40s have now had, so it’s a case of many more will get the virus, and I think it’s the way this has to go, we can’t keep on protecting in the hope it’s just going to go away as it won’t.

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