The secretary of health of Belo Horizonte, Cláudia Navarro, informed, in a press conference on the afternoon of this Monday (13), that the use of masks becomes mandatory in closed environments in Belo Horizonte. The rule goes into effect this Tuesday (14) and will, at least, until July 31. Inside football stadiums and at fairs, for example, there is no obligation. In open areas of schools, it is up to the management to decide.
According to data from the epidemiological bulletin of the Minas Gerais State Health Department (SES-MG), in the last 24 hours, 13,099 cases of Covid-19 were confirmed in the state.
In the same period, 18 deaths were recorded in Minas Gerais. In an interview given last week to O TEMPO, the former member of the extinct committee to deal with Covid, the infectologist Unaí Tupinambás, had already considered that this measure was indispensable, in addition, he considers that the capital of Minas Gerais is undergoing a fourth wave of contamination of the new coronavirus.
The secretary reported that childhood vaccination (from 5 to 11 years old) is much lower than expected. Only 70% of the target audience took the first dose, while the second was only given to 56% of the group. “The concern is general and the issue related to children is related to the low rate of vaccination”, explained Cláudia.
Regarding the immunization of adults against Covid-19, Cláudia explained that 109% of the public has already taken the first dose (it is more than 100% because it includes people who do not live in Belo Horizonte). In addition, 100% have already taken the second dose (or single dose) and 34% received the fourth dose (this audience is still being summoned).
“We (now) have a very low rate of hospitalized patients and we would be (if there was a disclosure) giving the wrong idea, if we compare it to one, two years ago”, explained Cláudia during the press conference.
Experts celebrate decision
Former members of the committee created in 2020 by PBH to analyze the progress of the Covid-19 pandemic in the capital, infectologists Unaí Tupinambás and Estevão Urbano believe that the decision to resume mandatory masks in closed places was a hit.
“Obliging is better than just advising. Especially in this phase of autumn and winter, I think it was very important. If you think about it, perhaps, the ideal would be not to have removed the obligation in April. We suspected that this new wave could happen, but , better late than never. Now, we hope that, who knows, by the beginning of July the cases will start to decrease, or even before that”, explains Tupinambás.
Urbano agrees with his colleague and classifies the mandatory use of masks in closed places as a “super-right” decision. “We currently have a high level of Covid transmission in BH, and it is very large in closed and poorly ventilated places. As a result, unvaccinated, elderly and immunosuppressed people are exposed and can suffer serious infections”, completes the specialist.
(With José Vítor Camilo)
Article updated at 5:58 pm