The so-called British strain of Covid-19 has been identified in 40% of cases diagnosed in Mallorca and 50% in Ibiza.
In light of that, Health Minister, Patricia Gómez has asked the Inter-territorial Council to review the de-escalation measures at national level, particularly the reopening bars and restaurants.
"The plan is not now homogeneous which is confusing," said Minister Gómez. "Our measures are very strict because we want ICU occupancy to fall below 10% occupancy," which she said is currently 28%.
The evolution of the British strain was the main focus of the Inter-territorial meeting, but it wasn't all bad news.
Preliminary studies show that the British variant stops the proliferation of the Brazilian and the South African strains. Some pharmaceutical companies have already announced that they will have to modify their vaccines to prevent the South African strain from spreading. So far, it has not been detected in the Balearic Islands.
The hope now is that the vaccination programme will progress quickly, so that everything can reopen safely and the Community won’t be hit by a fourth wave of the virus.
The Balearic Islands will receive 10,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine in March, which is double the amount that arrived in February. From April onwards it's hoped that there will be sufficient doses to carry out mass vaccination and preparations at Germans Escalas should be completed by then.
Minister Gómez confirmed that Health Workers in groups 3A and B, which also includes Dentists, Community Workers and Pharmacists got underway this week. Day Centre Workers and Guardians for the over 80’s will be next, then Police Officers and Teachers.
After that vaccination will be carried out by age group with the 70-79 year olds and 69 year olds will all be given the Pfizer vaccine and the 45-54 year olds will get the AstraZeneca jab.
"We have asked for more vaccines because we have larger population groups who are not being taken into account," added Minister Gómez.
The Balearics receives the second lowest amount of vaccines and Melilla is bottom of the list. The Health Department says that’s because distribution during the first stage is based on vulnerable groups and the Balearic Islands have one of the youngest populations in Spain. For instance, Asturias has 1,018,784 people, which is similar to the Balearic Islands, but 3.14% of the Asturias population is over 80, whereas in the Islands it's 1.72%.
The Nursing Union, SATSE has filed a complaint with the Labour Inspectorate accusing the Health Area Management in Ibiza and Formentera of violating the Law for the Prevention of Occupational Risks. Shop Stewards claim numerous notifications about the risks to hospital workers are not being answered.
A webinar entitled ‘Vaccines COVID-19: we resolve your doubts’ has been organised for March 4. It will be moderated by College of Nursing President, Maria José Sastre and participants include Specialist Joan Carles March; Midwife & PhD student in Public Health Research, Araceli Navas and nurse Laura Rodríguez.
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