Rafael Bengoa: “A strict home restriction will prevent 400 deaths a day”

IN public health expert Rafael Bengoa thinks the conclusion at home “strictly”although somewhat softer than in March and April last year, will “prevent 400 deaths a day” from the coronavirus and considers this option preferable to “living with the virus.”

The co-director of the Institute for Health and Strategy and a former health adviser to WHO told EFE that, in addition, countries that have followed this restrictive strategy “see their economies grow”especially South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, which have returned to normal.

According to Bengoa, who participates this Saturday in the tenth Diabetes Experience Day, a gathering that virtually brings together nearly 5,000 diabetes patients. the “living with the virus” option, which is a “political trend” in Spain, would mean continuing “another five or six months” with current measures partial limitation “and agree with a very high mortality rate.”

When asked whether he believes that more restrictive measures should be taken in Spain than the current ones, he confirms that Ten days won’t get rid of doubtswhen it says the impact of the current will be assessed, although he warns that “incidence and other rates will continue to be very high across the country.”

Achilles’ heel of the virus

As for the vaccine against coronavirus, the expert believes “very good news” on Pfizer’s promotion, but emphasizes that vaccinations will be carried out during 2021 and for several years, since “pandemics do not disappear, like the bombing, immediately”, but “gradually subside.”

There is already an effective vaccine, and more awaits.… They found the Achilles heel of this virus: the same thorns that are its power and that it uses to enter our cells are its Achilles heel, ”says Bengoa, who explains that vaccines that use the messenger RNA mechanism” This is how they change him “.

In Spain, he said, thanks to vaccines and public health controls that need to be continued for several months, the epidemic can be controlled and its incidence reduced to very low levels.

Don’t get complacent

Regarding the fight against the pandemic by the Government and the Autonomous Communities, Bengoa suggests that as the second wave “dies down,” “it’s important not to fall back into the self-righteous trap.” as indicators improve and continue to invest in primary health care and local public health and trackers.

For this expert in Spain in general scientific criteria were met, but “there is room for improvement”and suggests “learning in the face of the next crisis,” be it a pandemic or an environmental crisis, “for better science-policy interaction”.

Chronicity and pandemic

The co-director of the Institute for Health and Strategy believes that chronic disease was the “most vulnerable element” in this pandemic.and warns that unless there is a model that offers continuous care for chronic patients, they will not be “in sight,” making them “even more vulnerable due to the existing fragmented model.”

Bengoa argues that in the fight against the covid pandemic, a “national approach, collaborative planning between levels of government” is desirable because, for example, in the case of diabetes, having a national strategy does not add value because “innovations that have emerged at the national level over the past 20 years” and innovations »Are more local.

Finally, he believes that healthcare should offer the population “hybrid models – face-to-face and digital – and monitor quality and satisfaction and change user preferences.”

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