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Epidemiologist Rosendaal: “Vaccinate people under 30 first, then the rest.”

Leiden, December 5, 2020, 15:46 by the editorial office

Minister Hugo de Jonge hopes that on January 4 he will be able to vaccinate the first people against the corona virus. According to epidemiologist Frits Rosendaal of LUMC, it will be some time before the vaccine helps contain the virus. “The elderly are vaccinated first. It is a choice because of the safety of these people, but it does not help contain the virus. That is why I recommended vaccinating everyone under the age of thirty-one.

The first vaccines are currently being tested and may be approved this month. Minister De Jonge (public health) hopes that he will be able to start vaccinations on January 4. Rosendaal, an epidemiologist at LUMC in Leiden, calls it the good news. “Vaccinating people helps to contain the spread of the virus. In fact, it can be seen as an additional measure of government, ”Rosendaal told media partner Omroep West.

However, according to Rosendaal, it will be a while before the effects are visible. “The government decided to vaccinate the weakest groups first. This protects these people and will reduce the death rate. But this is also a group of people who hardly transmit the virus. These are people under the age of thirty and the elderly between the ages of 50 and 65. This is why I have advocated starting vaccinations here because then you are ensuring that the virus is inhibited as soon as possible and life can return to normal. “

Group resistance
According to Rosendaal, about 60 percent of the population will need to be vaccinated before the virus can be extinguished. “The vaccine works in the same way as the group immunity that Prime Minister Mark Rutte spoke about at the beginning. Then it was said that 60 to 70 percent of the population should have a crown. About 10 percent of the population has been infected. If we assume that they can no longer get it or donate it, about 60 percent still need to be vaccinated to contain the virus. “

Nevertheless, according to an expert, the crown measures could be relaxed earlier. “When part of the population is vaccinated, fewer people will become infected and the disease will be slower in the vaccinated groups,” explains Rosendaal. “The vaccine can actually be treated as an additional measure. They are now also configured to prevent the virus from spreading to certain groups. It works the same for the vaccine.

Indirect vaccination obligation
With the vaccine, it is possible that those who have been vaccinated may do more than those who are still waiting for the vaccine. “There are different options to solve this problem. You can imagine that people who have proof that they have been vaccinated get some freedom that others do not yet have. There are people who think this is a good idea, but I can imagine people are against this mandatory immunization. ‘

It is especially important now that the government ensures that the organization is ready to get everyone vaccinated as soon as possible. Rosendaal trusts that. “With the flu vaccine, GPs already have extensive experience with vaccination. I’m over sixty and I got an injection last week. I think I left again in three minutes. There is expertise, now it is only important that it gets set up properly ”.

Daily data is not reliable
The vaccine is a way out of the corona crisis. Until a vaccine is available, we will have restrictive measures. The number of new infections is slowly falling and changing every day. RIVM reported 4,942 new corona infections on Wednesday. That’s much more than 4,063 new infections on Tuesday. That’s much less than Monday. According to the LUMC epidemiologist, the daily numbers should not be over-valued. “Daily data is not reliable enough, you shouldn’t be looking at it.”

An epidemiologist in Leiden explains: “It’s a technical story, but the shorter the time span, the greater the chance of fluctuations. If you compare the data every half an hour, you will also notice a significant drop in eg. Lunch break. So it’s best to look at the weekly figures and here we see a slight decrease. ”

Almost no place
Rosendaal himself believes the number of hospital admissions is even more important than the number of new infections each day. “Not everyone with ailments can be tested and it is not known whether they will be tested with complaints on the first day or only after three or four days. Hospitalization is more reliable as it has fewer variables and people are generally admitted at the same time. ‘

These figures raise concerns among physicians about the period until the vaccine may be widely used. “The decline in infections is not going as fast as expected. I find it scary. Because we hardly have room for a new peak. I heard some caterers want to open in January. I’d send a boa there right away. It is not responsible now. We have much less freedom than in the summer. ‘

Coronation Crisis in Leiden Society

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