By Ayman Adly/Staff Reporter
* Current scenario promising for lifting of restrictions to proceed as planned
* People should avoid travelling to Covid-19 high-risk countries, including those vaccinated
It is unlikely that new cases of Covid-19 infection will see any further spike in Qatar as long as more people continue to get vaccinated and also abide by the precautionary and preventive measures, a senior health official has said.
Dr Yousef al-Maslamani (pictured),medical director of Hamad General Hospital, told Qatar TV yesterday that he was satisfied with the progress of vaccination in Qatar and that people continued to show up to take the vaccine. This is a very good indicator, one that will help reduce the time required to reach the desired community immunity with around 70-80% of the eligible people being vaccinated, he noted.
The high level of community awareness about the issue has also contributed to a drop in daily Covid-19 cases, he said, adding that the current scenario is promising for the lifting of restrictions which will proceed as scheduled and enter the next phases.
The second phase came into effect on June 18.
Dr al-Maslamani stressed that the Covid-19 vaccines give up to 95% protection and there is a “next to zero” chance of infection among vaccinated people. And even if such people do get infected, it would not be as severe as in the case of unvaccinated individuals.
However, he stressed that the public should continue to abide by the precautionary measures and advised people to avoid travelling to Covid-19 high-risk countries, including those vaccinated.
He also reiterated the view that unvaccinated people pose a risk to themselves and others, as the possibility of infection among them could go up to 100%.
Further, Dr al-Maslamani said the recent drop in cases of Covid-19 has helped ease the load on the country’s health sector, and it is no longer necessary to allocate more beds, ICU units and quarantine facilities. This will enable the health sector to resume regular services besides lowering the need to allocate special medical staff to handle Covid-19 cases.
He said it has been seen throughout history that viruses rarely disappear and vanish, which could also be the case with Covid-19.
However, the introduction of vaccines and medication help mitigate the risk and people will learn to coexist with this and develop the necessary immunity through the means available, such as inoculation.
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