San José, June 10 (Elpaís.cr) .- The fourth part of the Costa Rican population will be vaccinated, starting this Monday, against the influenza A and B viruses that are currently circulating in the southern hemisphere.
During this new campaign, which will last until July 22, two more groups will be targeted for this protection: the child population between five and six years old and the workers who perform migratory functions, such as airports and border posts, according to the technical recommendation of the National Vaccination Commission, made up of professionals from different entities in the health sector.
It is about one of the biggest days of vaccination against influenza that was done in the national territory and is expected to exceed the previous year's coverage target of 92%. At this time, the vaccine is already in all health units.
One of the peculiarities that will be on this occasion is that efforts will be redoubled to protect two at-risk groups whose coverage was very low the previous year: patients with heart disease and pregnant women.
"Historically the time of greatest circulation of respiratory viruses has been in the second half of the year, but in 2019 we have seen an increase in the last weeks of May and June 1. For this reason, we ask the population to take preventive measures for these diseases: washing their hands with soap and water, coughing and sneezing properly, staying home if they are sick to avoid contagion, and going to the call for this influenza vaccination campaign, "said Health Minister Dr. Daniel Salas.
As part of the strategies that the professionals of the Social Security Fund of Costa Rica (CCSS) will employ, Attempts will be made to place the vaccines in specialized cardiology consultations and vaccination will be promoted at prenatal consultations.
Roman Macaya Hayes, The CCSS executive president compared this vaccination to that done in 2004 when 90,000 seniors from at-risk groups were vaccinated and an investment of nearly $ 320,000 was made. However, 1.3 million people will be protected this year and the investment was $ 6.7 million.
This year the target groups of vaccination are the following:
• All children over six months and under six years of age.
• All elderly people regardless of risk.
• Pregnant in any month of pregnancy.
• People over six years and under 60 years old with some risk factors such as diabetes, heart disease, respiratory diseases, cancer, obese, chronic kidney disease, immunosuppressed, with cirrhosis, hemoglobinopathies, immunological diseases, neurological problems, among others. .
As in recent years, the Southern Hemisphere vaccine has been acquired protects against two strains of influenza A virus and two strains of B virus what are the viruses that are circulating in this year 2019.
The doctor Leandra Abarca Gómez, coordinator of the CCSS immunization program, explained that What is wanted with this vaccination is to reduce the incidence of respiratory complications associated with these viruses and acknowledged that, since the introduction of the vaccine in 2004, these complications were reduced in the national territory.
The health authorities hope that this year the population's response to the call for vaccination will exceed the results of 2018, when protection coverage was reached close to 92%, which was considered satisfactory by the CCSS specialists.
It is expected that, as in the previous year, it will not be necessary to open an extraordinary period of vaccination, the day will begin today June 10 across the country in June and will end on July 22.
This year the Technical Assistants of Comprehensive Health Care (Ataps) will have to make a great effort to achieve the desired coverage of vaccination, since they had to carry out the extraordinary measles vaccination that was carried out from December 12 of the last year to the 31 "In March of this year, vaccination against the papilloma virus that began the previous Monday and now is the day of vaccination with Influenza.