Panama this Monday exceeded 500,000 cases of the covid-19 accumulated in more than 21 months of pandemic, when the Central American country experiences a fourth wave driven by the omicron variant.
The Ministry of Health (Minsa) reported 1,363 new cases of covid-19 and seven deaths, which brought confirmed infections to 500,148 and 7,440 deaths since the disease was detected in the country on March 9, 2020.
- Panama has registered at least 55 cases of the omicron variant
- Panama is experiencing a fourth pandemic wave driven by the omicron variant
- Health authorities confirm the first case of the omicron variant in Panama
The new daily cases have suffered a sharp rise in recent days, but not the number of hospitalized, which although it has risen is still at low levels: 31 patients are in intensive care units (ICU) and 174 in the general ward.
Another figure that has multiplied is that of people isolated in their homes for testing positive for covid: there are 15,841, while 205 are in hotels.
The omicron is highly contagious and “seems to be less serious causing hospitalization,” the head of the National Secretariat for Science, Technology and Innovation (Senacyt), Dr. Eduardo Ortega-Barría, commented to Efe, who stressed that vaccination continues to be a tool vital to combat the covid pandemic.
The omicron can be “a simple flu if you are vaccinated, if you have the booster you will be able to handle it more efficiently. But it is not a simple flu for people who are not vaccinated, “he added.
This Monday, vaccination against covid was resumed for the population of 12 years or more after a break at the end of the year.
According to the Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI), since January 20, 2020, 6,324,934 doses of covid-19 vaccines have been applied, the vast majority from Pfizer, and the remainder from AstraZeneca.
Of the total, 3,125,793 corresponds to the first dose; 2,815,499 to second; 375,404 booster and 8,238 third dose for immunosuppressed patients.
Coverage of the target population, people 12 years of age or older, is 90.5% with the first dose and 81.5% with the second.
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