New COVID-19 Variant / Patria Vaccine Ready SoonBy Paloma Duran | Tue, 11/30/2021 - 11:35
Mexico reports an increase in COVID-19 infections. Deputy Minister of Health Hugo López-Gatell announced that the country reported a 6 percent increase in COVID-19 cases; however, only 0.5 percent are active cases. In addition, López-Gatell said that hospitalizations and deaths related to COVID-19 have also risen although they remain at low levels. "We started the week with an increase in COVID-19 infections, first 4 percent, now 6 percent. However, only 0.5 percent of cases are active cases with the possibility of transmission."
The Ministry of Health reported that 1,050 cases of COVID-19 were recorded on Sunday, raising the number of total infections since the pandemic began to 883,842. Meanwhile, the death toll rose to 293,897. Specialists expect that as Christmas celebrations begin next month, the figures will increase significantly.
New variant of COVID-19 will arrive in Mexico. López-Gatell said that the new variant of COVID-19, omicron, will arrive soon in Mexico. "We can guarantee that omicron will be one of the predominant variables in Mexico. We also have to take it for granted that it will reach all the countries of the world.” López-Gatell stressed that the new variant has not yet proven to be more virulent or transmissible or cause greater symptoms in case of contagion, and he asked people to remain calm. However, López-Gatell recalled that the country is still in a health crisis and all Mexicans must continue to take care of themselves.
The new omicron variant was discovered on Nov. 11 in South Africa. Since then, the variant has been found in Europe, Australia, US, Canada, and other African states. Researchers have not yet confirmed whether the variant is more dangerous. However, they said it has 32 coronavirus mutations, which can make it harder for the immune system to fight the virus. In addition, due to the increase in cases around the world, some countries are implementing more sanitary restrictions and closing borders to protect their populations.
Patria vaccine will be ready in 2022. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador announced that the Mexican COVID-19 vaccine Patria is progressing very well. It is expected to be ready in 2022. “The results obtained in the first test stage are very good, which gives us a lot of hope and optimism. I think we will have the vaccine next year. We will use it mostly in Mexico, but we will also help other countries."
In October, the director of CONACYT, María Elena Álvarez-Buylla Roces, announced the start of phase 1 clinical trials in humans for the Patria vaccine. Álvarez said that the vaccine could be analyzed by COFEPRIS before the end of the year to authorize its emergency use. However, according to the schedule established by CONACYT, the vaccine is delayed by five months and specialists believe that the vaccine will not be ready during the first months of 2022.
Crime incidence in Mexico City decreases. Mayor of Mexico City Claudia Sheinbaum reported that crime in Mexico City has decreased by 41 percent since 2019. In addition, Sheinbaum explained that although Gustavo A. Madero and Iztapalapa concentrate the highest number of crimes, the incidence rate has decreased significantly. “The delegation with the highest crime incidence rate is Iztapalapa, with more than 9,000 incidents since 2019. It is followed by Gustavo A. Madero, Cuauhtemoc, Venustiano Carranza, Alvaro Obregon, Tlalpan and Coyoacan. These seven delegations concentrate the highest number of crimes. We are committed to continuing to lower this figure.”
In 2020, Mexico City had the country’s highest crime incidence. The capital has a crime incidence rate of 53,334 per 100,000 inhabitants. During the pandemic, the incidence of crime decreased by 14 percent; however, now that people are returning to their normal activities, some crimes, such as theft, are on the rise again.
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