Covid-19: Governments can now prepare to issue new decrees with social isolation measures, says microbiologist


RIO – After a slow drop in the number of cases and deaths from coronavirus, observed in the last two months, the country was once again haunted by the Covid-19 pandemic. States in all regions of the country, such as Rio, São Paulo, Mato Grosso, Acre and Paraná, observe the moving averages of occurrences and deaths until they have tripled in recent days.

Public health experts warn that municipalities in more critical conditions should reinforce measures of social isolation – an initiative that, they recognize, may be met with resistance by the population, after months of quarantine and on the verge of the holiday season.

Number of cases grows in Rio and São Paulo Photo: Disclosure

For the microbiologist at the University of São Paulo (USP) Laura de Freitas, some areas of the country should already be issuing decrees with stricter isolation measures, such as closing trade and other activities.

– It’s in the moment. We are experiencing the escalation of cases, the ideal is to close now so as not to get worse and overburden hospitals – says Freitas.

Moving average of deaths also went up Photo: Editoria de arte
Moving average of deaths also went up Photo: Editoria de arte

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According to the expert, the measures to reduce the numbers are the known ones: social isolation, mask and alcohol gel.

– The use of the mask is even more recommended now than at the beginning of the pandemic because science has found that the mask decreases the severity of the disease. Whoever is infected using the equipment receives a lower viral load and tends to have a milder disease – she says, for those who are starting to form a second wave of the disease .: – It is a fact. In fact, the first is not even over. Unlike Europe, here the number of cases has only declined and has already risen again.

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Coordinator of the Diagnostic Front of the Unicamp Task Force against Covid-19, Alessandro Farias estimates that the recent increase in cases of the pandemic is a “tidal wave week”.

See the state variation Photo: Editoria de arte
See the state variation Photo: Editoria de arte

– I don’t know if these rates will continue to grow, because the current scenario in Brazil cannot be compared to that seen in Europe, where countries almost zeroed the number of cases until a second wave arrives. We never approach that reality – he says. – The population started to relax and returned to the streets, even without a vaccine. It is difficult to lockdown and avoid returning to the peak of the pandemic, because we need to think of solutions for traders not to close their doors.

Paulo Petry, a doctor in Epidemiology from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), considers that the population “got tired of the pandemic” and that the arrival of the summer caused agglomerations. One consequence is an increase in the transmission rate.

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In its most recent survey, released yesterday, Imperial College in London found that Covid-19’s average transmission rate (Rt) in Brazil was 1.1 in the past week – that is, every hundred people infected infect another 110. The contagion rate is one of the main references to monitor the epidemic evolution of Sars-CoV-2. This time, it grew by 0.33 and returned to almost the same level as two weeks ago.

– It is an inexorable cycle: the incidence, hospitalizations, ICU admissions and deaths – laments Petry. – We have never really made a quarantine, we are restricted to detachment. We need to think about more severe measures and call for the collaboration of the population. Unfortunately there will be an economic impact and an emotional cost in the face of the holiday season.

This Tuesday, 32,262 new cases and 676 new deaths were recorded in the last 24 hours, totaling 5.9 million infected and 166,743 lives lost since the start of the pandemic, according to a press release from the consortium of media outlets. The moving average of deaths was 557, the highest in the last 35 days, with an upward trend in 14 states. This is a 45% growth compared to 15 days ago.

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The moving average of cases, in turn, stood at 29,674, 71% more than two weeks ago. This index shows an upward trend in 17 states

For the researcher of Analytical Methods in Public Health at Fiocruz Marcelo Gomes, the four days without disclosure of the number of deaths in some states hindered the different prognoses made on the data.

– This blackout (due to the Ministry of Health’s system) was very serious and harmful for all types of analysis, because, taking into account the disclosure data, it damped the numbers, which were then released. This should cause problems, especially for the analysis of the moving average.

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