Forgive me, Latvia is as lucky as a drowned man – we manage to occupy leading positions in all negative ratings. At the time of the introduction of the lockdown, our country “broke” into first place in the world in terms of the incidence rate. By the time the lockdown is completed, we continue to hold the leading positions in Europe in terms of mortality from covid.
But even without covid, there was an extremely unfavorable demographic situation in our country – in fact, for the last at least 15 years, the mortality rate was noticeably ahead of the birth rate.
As of the end of October, the population of Latvia has decreased by more than 11 thousand people! That is, we have lost the whole city, and the year is not over yet!
Was Lockdown ineffective?
Someone might say that since the death rate from covid during the lockdown did not decrease, but even increased (at least on some days), then these severe restrictive measures failed.
In fact, you need to understand that, firstly, those who are in a serious and very serious condition in the hospital today could have become infected even before the lockdown or in the first weeks of the lockdown. Secondly, vaccination coverage is still, to put it mildly, unsatisfactory, especially among at-risk groups. And even a lockdown cannot completely prevent the spread of the virus. Statistics show that the incidence continues, and the percentage of positive tests per day is still high – at least 8%. Consequently, the virus continues its uncontrolled spread.
But the high incidence rate, of course, does not explain the record high mortality rate. It is 8 times the death rate from covid in most EU countries! That is, we have 8 times more deaths from this virus (as a percentage of the total number of inhabitants) than in Germany, Austria, Italy, Belgium, Malta, Poland …
What are the reasons for the record high death rate from covid? There are at least four main reasons.
Elderly and sick
The first reason. As you know, this virus is especially ruthless to the elderly. And in the 60 plus category, and especially in the 80 and older category, until recently less than 60% were fully vaccinated in our country! Obviously, at an advanced age, immunity is no longer so strong, besides, most seniors have at least one, or even several chronic diseases, including the most dangerous in covid – diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases. Add to this the elderly, as well as non-elderly obese people.
The second reason. Not all patients with covid “panic”. Some patients first try to cope with the virus on their own, and the test is taken with a noticeable delay – often already on the fourth or fifth day from the moment the first symptoms appear. If the patient lives alone and there are no vigilant relatives, colleagues or friends next to him, then the patient may miss the moment when he urgently needs to see a doctor. As a result, some patients are admitted to the hospital with a noticeable delay, when the percentage of lung damage is very high …
It is clear that if the lungs are affected by 70 percent or more, then the chance of survival is markedly reduced. As doctors admit, the Indian strain has a very fast course – many develop severe pneumonia on the 4th or 6th day of illness. Whereas with the previous strains, this happened on the 7-10th day from the moment the first symptoms appeared.
Certainly, certain patients are negatively affected by information about the overload of hospitals, that the ambulance is working at its maximum capacity and “sorting” calls. As a result, patients are afraid to “disturb” doctors. And being late with covid is really like death …
Reason three… Information that certain patients have a positive test for covid often comes to family doctors with a delay. In addition, family doctors are terribly overworked, including the endless filling of medical records. Until they “get” to the patient, it takes several days from the moment of illness, and it is already too late …
But even if family doctors call the patient on time or the patients themselves “catch” the doctor on the phone, this, as you understand, does not guarantee recovery. The overwhelming majority of family doctors do not visit covid patients – counseling or treatment takes place over the phone. It is extremely difficult to assess the condition of a patient, especially one who is uncritical of himself, over the phone. To call the patient every day or even two or three times a day and inquire about his condition, family doctors often do not have time to physically. Indeed, with such an incidence of covid in Latvia, one family doctor can “have” up to 20-30 such patients. As a result, patients who do not receive outpatient care are more often admitted to the hospital and, more often, get seriously ill.
When the third is not superfluous
The situation could improve if family doctors did visit patients with coronavirus – at least from risk groups. By the way, it would have been possible to allocate additional funds to doctors for a long time so that family doctors could hire a third nurse, a doctor’s assistant, or even a registrar (possibly from among medical students) who would call patients daily and if necessary, they would immediately connect the doctor to the conversation.
And finally, the fourth reason. It is possible that many people with coronavirus would not have left this world if it were not for the concomitant diseases that finished them off. Unfortunately, sometimes the vaccine does not help if a person with COVID-19 has an exacerbation of concomitant diseases. It is clear that if the coronavirus infects a person with a very weakened immune system, after a stroke, with kidney problems, with cancer, then this combination can be fatal.
Vaccine and pills
Hence the conclusion: the sooner at least 75% of residents aged 12 and over are fully vaccinated, the higher the chance that a new, even stronger mutant of the coronavirus will not have time to form. And then this “conveyor of death” will be able to stop. Especially provided that at least closer to spring, medicines appear in the European Union that stop the multiplication of the virus in the first two to three days after the onset of symptoms. Take care of yourself!
Source: GOROD.LV – новости Даугавпилса by gorod.lv.
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