Outlook regarding the autumn is not a very positive one - infectologist

  • 2021-08-25
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - There is no good news regarding the autumn, projecting the expected spread of Covid-19 in Latvia in the coming months, infectologist Uga Dumpis told Latvian Television this morning.

According to the infectologist, it is unfortunately clear that Covid-19 infection rates in Latvia will increase, and the question is how big this ''next wave'' will be, which cannot be predicted. Meanwhile, the task of the state is to ensure that widespread infection does not occur simultaneously, for example, by reducing the greatest risks of the spread of infection, which are observed in closed and poorly ventilated premises.

Dumpis repeatedly emphasized that the biggest problem in Latvia in the fight against Covid-19 is the low vaccination coverage. Being unvaccinated, there is a high probability of getting infected with Covid-19 this winter season, the expert predicted.

The specialist acknowledged that the Covid-19 Delta variant, unlike the previous mutations, also reaches the vaccinated, but in any case they are significantly better protected from serious symptoms, hospitalization and death.

Dumpis noted that the Covid-19 risk groups have not changed and are still seniors, chronically ill people, people with high blood pressure, overweight, etc. He is also concerned about the increased prevalence of Covid-19 in young people, both because some children are having sever symptoms and because they can pass the infection on to people at risk.

The expert does not anticipate that vaccination of children against Covid-19 will be mandatory, and the results of various studies in this area are still being awaited, such as whether children could be vaccinated with lower doses of vaccines or whether there will be new vaccines for children.

However, in general, according to Dumps, vaccinating children is not what should be focused on at the moment, because the key is still to achieve higher vaccination coverage among adults who are more at risk.

Dunpis supports weekly testing in schools - although he believes it should be even more frequent, once a week is good, and it will provide a broader insight into the prevalence of Covid-19 in families with children, and thus in society as a whole.

Asked what surprised him in the anti-vaccination campaign led by certain groups, Dumpis said that he was surprised by almost everything, but it is absolutely absurd to see vaccinated representatives of these groups organizing this anti-vaccination movement.