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Weekly Roundups

Health Tech Boosts COVID-19 Protection

By Miriam Bello | Thu, 01/14/2021 - 13:01

Medical professionals that have been at the forefront of the pandemic for almost a year are gradually receiving the COVID-19 vaccine in Mexico. This week, mass vaccination campaigns have begun. While vaccines have demonstrated their efficacy, preventive measures must continue to dimmish overflows at hospital in places like Mexico City.

Here’s the Week in Health!

NATIONAL

-Last weekend, Deputy Minister of Health Hugo López-Gatell traveled to Argentina, country that, alongside Mexico, will work on the production of the AstraZeneca vaccine to be distributed in both countries.

-Mexico vaccinated more than 94,000 people against COVID-19 on Wednesday, after the mass vaccination plan began. In total, 192,567 people have been vaccinated, reported the Ministry of Health.

-According to the most recent report of the WTO, Mexico is among the main exporters of critical medical products to combat COVID-19 in 2020. “In Mexico, sales of this type of medical equipment grew 8.4 percent against 2019. The country represents 3.3 percent of the exports of critical products against COVID-19 worldwide.”

-Mexico City’s hospital capacity in at 89 percent. Due to this emergency scenario, Governor Claudia Sheinbaum announced extra efforts to enable more beds at the Tlahuac General Hospital. 

-This week, Agustín Azcatl of Ortiz & Ramírez Abogados wrote for MBN about Mexico boosting accessibility to drug patents for production of generics. “The Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI) and COFEPRIS have implemented digital platforms that have eased procedures to allow a competitive generics market by providing greater accessibility to patent documents related to active ingredients for pharmaceutical use.” With the information on the platform and in the GAZETTE, a generics manufacturer would have the knowledge necessary to avoid breaching the rights granted to the patent holders.

-With the rise of telemedicine, its professionalization must be guaranteed to ensure safe care provision, while effectively responding to doctors’ and patients’ needs. Juan Caceres, CEO of Aidicare, explained that medical apps have to consider specialized cameras, ultrasound, electrocardiogram, thermometers, oximeters and other equipment required for different medical specialties.

INTERNATIONAL

-Russia announced the start of clinical trials for its Sputnik Light vaccine, a one dose vaccine against COVID-19.

-As a new variant of COVID-9 came to light in Brazil, the UK has banned flights to and from South American countries including Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay and Venezuela. Portugal is also among the banned list of countries due to its close travel relations with Brazil.

-Johnson & Johnson single shot vaccine demonstrated strong positive results after the end of Phase 1/2 clinical trials. According an official communicate of the company, “data demonstrated that, after a single vaccination, neutralizing antibodies against COVID-19 were detected in over 90 percent of study participants at Day 29 and 100 percent of participants aged 18-55 years at Day 57.”

-Microsoft Corp, Oracle Corp, along with the health companies Cigna Corp and the Mayo Clinic, will be part of a coalition of entities that seek to promote the digital registry of people vaccinated against COVID-19. According to the coalition, the project called the Vaccination Credentials Initiative, aims to help people obtain encrypted digital copies of their vaccination records stored in the digital wallet of their choice.

-In Argentina, the Abortion Law comes into effect today.

-Pope Francis received the first dose of the coronavirus vaccine, the Vatican reported.

Miriam Bello Miriam Bello Journalist and Industry Analyst