The decreases in cases and deaths from COVID-19 thanks to vaccinations will only come when countries have vaccinated around 50% of their populations, said today the chief scientist of the World Health Organization (WHO), Soumya Swaminathan of India.
Commenting on the situation in her country, which despite being one of the largest producers of anticovid vaccines and one of those that has vaccinated the most people, experiences a serious wave of infections, the expert pointed out that “only when coverage of 50 % of the population begin to see significant reductions in cases “.
“The decline in deaths may be even earlier, given that priority populations are covered first, “said the scientist referring to the elderly and chronically ill.” A country like India has 1,000 million to vaccinate, so this is not going to happen overnight. “He highlighted about a country that has administered more than 150 million doses, but in which only 2% of the population has received the two necessary to be fully immunized.
“Only when coverage of 50% of the population is reached do we begin to see significant reductions in cases”
For now, in India and other countries with high transmission, the prevention measures that have prevailed throughout the pandemic (mask, personal distancing, etc.) are still necessary, Swaminathan stressed, “also in vaccination centers, to prevent them from becoming outbreaks of transmission”.
Only two countries for now have more than 50% of citizens fully vaccinated (Seychelles e Israel, with around 60%), while those that are closest to reaching that percentage are Arab Emirates (38%), Chile (35%), Bahrain (32%), and EE UU (31%), according to the vaccination figures provided by their health networks.
In the world, more than 1.1 billion doses have been administered so far, with China as the country that has inoculated the most (275 million), followed by the United States (245 million) and India. Taking into account that it is necessary to vaccinate at least 70% of the population to achieve group immunity and that most of the anticovid vaccines require two doses, approximately 10,000 million doses have to be administered on the planet to guarantee the end of the COVID-19 pandemic.