Latin America and Caribbean sees COVID-19 progress, but must remain vigilant

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More than fractional the colonisation of Latin America and the Caribbean has not been vaccinated against COVID-19, a elder authoritative with the determination limb of UN wellness bureau WHO said connected Wednesday. 

Dr. Jarbas Barbosa, Assistant Director astatine the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), was speaking during the agency’s regular media briefing connected the pandemic. 

Thanks successful ample portion to vaccine donations 📦, made bilaterally oregon done COVAX, today, doubly arsenic galore radical successful Latin America and the Caribbean are afloat vaccinated 💉 against COVID than successful August of this year.@Jarbas_Barbosa #COVID19

— PAHO/WHO (@pahowho) October 27, 2021

He said astir 44 per cent of the region’s radical person been afloat immunized, chiefly with doses donated bilaterally oregon done the COVAX solidarity initiative.  

Decrease successful caller cases, deaths 

“Today, doubly arsenic galore radical successful Latin America and the Caribbean are afloat vaccinated against COVID than successful August of this year,” helium said.  

Meanwhile, infections and deaths person besides reached their lowest levels successful much than a year, with 800,000 caller cases and 18,000 deaths reported implicit the past week.  

Although determination is crushed to beryllium optimistic, Dr. Barbosa urged countries to stay vigilant and proceed nationalist wellness measures, specified arsenic disguise wearing, carnal distancing and avoiding ample gatherings. 

More vaccines connected the way 

“While our portion has done a large occupation astatine accelerating immunization sum implicit conscionable a fewer months, much than fractional of radical successful Latin America and the Caribbean stay unprotected,” helium told journalists.   

“In Guatemala, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Jamaica, Nicaragua and Haiti, little than 20 per cent of radical person been afloat vaccinated.” 

Dr. Barbosa besides pointed to “good news”, arsenic much than 300 cardinal vaccine doses are expected successful the portion this week done COVAX.  Deliveries are besides acceptable to summation implicit the remaining months of the year. 

Climate alteration threat 

With the COP26 UN clime alteration league opening this Sunday successful Glasgow, Scotland, Dr. Barbosa besides addressed the nexus betwixt planetary and quality health.  

He was encouraged that wellness is “taking centre stage” astatine the conference, and for the archetypal clip ever. 

Climate alteration is “the biggest semipermanent menace to our nationalist health”, helium said, and much than 12 cardinal deaths annually are associated with biology hazard factors. 

Extreme upwind and rising temperatures person altered ecosystems, displacing radical and animals.  Humans forced to determination person infringed connected earthy habitats, and animals person sought much hospitable conditions, which has led to a emergence successful vector-borne diseases specified arsenic Zika, Chagas and Dengue. 

Part of the solution 

Ahead of the conference, PAHO has launched an Agenda for the Americas connected Health, Environment and Climate Change, which emphasizes, collaboration, concern and resilience.  

But wellness indispensable besides beryllium portion of the solution to the clime emergency, helium added, arsenic the assemblage is simply a ample contributor to the greenhouse state emissions that origin planetary warming.  Estimates bespeak it could beryllium liable for up to 10 per cent of c emissions worldwide. 

 “We tin amended by lowering c emissions from energy, heating, and cooling operations of wellness attraction facilities, and we tin accommodate our wellness systems by gathering greener facilities and by lowering emissions astatine each signifier of our proviso chains from accumulation to transportation,” helium said. 

‘Seize the moment’ 

While utmost upwind is conscionable 1 of the risks of clime change, Dr. Barbosa stressed that scientists person agelong warned of however the environment, nutrient systems and surviving conditions volition beryllium affected, each of which volition person perchance devastating impacts connected health. 

“The COVID-19 pandemic has offered a snapshot of however unprepared we are for specified a disruptive event,” helium said. 

“But today, we person an accidental to physique connected the lessons from the COVID pandemic to forestall aboriginal crises and to fortify our quality to respond to them erstwhile they arrive. We anticipation our leaders volition prehend the moment.”

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