A national epidemiological re-emergence, or fourth wave of COVID-19 cases spiking, is to be expected in Mexico despite the successful progression of the nation’s vaccination campaign and current low numbers.
Vice Minister of Prevention and Health Promotion Hugo López-Gatell is not ruling out future waves of COVID-19 infections in Mexico. Although the country has given two doses of COVID-19 vaccination to nearly half of its population and continues to administer vaccines at a fast pace, the world’s leading countries in vaccine administration provide an estimate regarding the future of the pandemic for Mexico.
“There can be not only a fourth, but a fifth, sixth and even seventh wave at any moment. The US is approaching its seventh, for now (COVID-19 cases) are decreasing but nothing takes away the fact that it could activate,” López-Gatell said.
López-Gatell warned the Mexican public of the upcoming winter season, as the virus is known to be spread more easily in cooler climates due to saliva drops remaining in the air longer. Even though the country has seen 14 consecutive weeks of cases dropping, the upcoming winter season could see the emergence of the fourth wave of COVID-19 cases in the country. López-Gatell said that as long as other nations continue seeing spikes of cases, Mexico is not completely safe from experiencing the same.
Queretaro’s Health Minister, Martina Pérez Rendón, said that the approaching fourth wave could be as bad as the third, which saw the highest number of active cases on a seven-day average yet. There are currently over 3,000 active cases following a 21 percent decrease in the last 14 days. Another worrying factor for the winter season is the arrival of the flu season, which health experts internationally warn could be the worst in recent years due to the low levels of infections since the pandemic started leading to an eventual spike.
A silver lining could be found in already existing health protocols but the Mexican public must continue to comply with them to prevent the fourth wave from rising to previously seen numbers. If health protocols are followed, and due to the rise in vaccinated Mexicans, the fourth wave’s total impact could be contained, argues Pérez Rendón.
Following a drop from the second wave’s 5.3 deaths per 100 confirmed cases to 3.6 in the third, a lower mortality rate during the fourth wave could be expected. Although a fifth and sixth wave lie in the country’s future according to López-Gatell, these could see a further mortality rate decrease.
The country’s vaccination campaign will continue to minimize the damage of these waves. At least one dose has been applied to 80 million Mexicans but 11 percent of those, who form 59 percent of the country’s population, have not received a second dose.