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Weekly Roundups

COVID-19 Third Wave Overshadowed by Other Matters

By Miriam Bello | Thu, 07/22/2021 - 16:19

As Mexico goes through a COVID-19 third wave, other affectations are coming to the light. Deputy Ministry of Health, Hugo Lopez-Gatell explained that a total lockdown is unlikely to occur, but he continues to encourage young Mexicans to get vaccinated and respect sanitary measures to avoid massive hospital occupation and an oxygen crisis, like the one seen during the second wave.

Here is the week in health!

COVID-19 pandemic delayed childhood immunization campaigns

About 23 million children did not receive basic immunizations in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the UN reported. This is the largest decline in child vaccination the world has seen since 2009.

The COVID-19 third wave

Three minors died of COVID-19 in Sinaloa. The victims were a one-year-old boy in the municipality of El Fuerte, a 10-year-old boy in Los Mochis and a 14-year-old teenager in Ahome. Given the accelerated increase in infections, the entity set its epidemiological traffic light to red.

 

Non-essential land travel restrictions on the US-Mexico border will remain until August 21, due to the advance of the pandemic, the Ministry of Foreign Relations reported.

Abortion as a health right

Veracruz became the fourth state in Mexico to decriminalize abortion. The initiative to reform the Penal Code was approved on Tuesday by the State Congress and will allow the interruption of pregnancy before 12 weeks of gestation.

The Ministry of Health to be decentralized

As part of his campaign promises President Andrés Manuel López Obrador vowed to decentralize most state Ministries and federal agencies. The first one migrating appears to be the Ministry of Health from Mexico City to Guerrero. Recently, President López Obrador visited the Ministry’s intended headquarters, which are already under construction in Acapulco.

Novel therapy options aim to expand access to care

Numerous therapies and new molecules are making their way to the market. Among them are biosimilars, which thanks to their lower costs and excellent quality can bring diverse opportunities for patients and the pharmaceutical industry. Read our interview of leading biosimilar company, Sandoz. In it Enrique Liñero, its Country Manager, explained the company’s work to become the number one biosimilar brand in Mexico.

Oncological medicine shortages to be resolved by international means? 

During the past month, protests from parents of children with cancer escalated due to the lack of response from Mexico’s government. In the search for a solution, parents took their complaints to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR). Learn more about this issue on this article.

US continues to fight opioid crisis

The pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson and the three largest drug distribution companies in the US agreed to pay US$26 billion to several states affected by the opioid crisis. With this agreement, complaints to the pharmaceutical company and the distributors will be withdrawn and the money will be used to support the communities hardest hit by addiction to opioids.

World Brain Day

Today is World Brain Day, an event stablished by the World Federation of Neurology in 2014 to increase public awareness and promote advocacy for brain health. 2021’s theme is Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and includes a campaign to raise awareness on this disability, its prevalence, care and early diagnosis. Learn more about MS and new treatments for this condition here.

Miriam Bello Miriam Bello Journalist and Industry Analyst