Many more infections and deaths from Covid-19 are expected at this stage.
MEXICO (Health Ministry) – Undersecretary of the Health Ministry, Hugo López-Gatell, decreed Mexico is in Phase 3 due to the coronavirus epidemic or Covid-19.
In which an increase in infections and hospitalizations is predicted. For this reason, a call was made to the population to maintain the mitigation measures, through the National Day of Healthy Distance.
“Today, Phase 3 of the covid epidemic is initiated. We remind you this is a phase of rapid ascent, with a great number of cases, of contagion. Hospitalizations will accumulate. I remind you that we must maintain the National Healthy Distance moving infection to the minimum.” Said Hugo López – Gatell Ramírez, Undersecretary of Prevention and Health Promotion.
In the morning conference at the National Palace, the official mentioned that the General Health Council approved the declaration of phase 3 for the new coronavirus.
“It is in the hands of the Ministry of Health to issue the guidelines to make these provisions operational and has the responsibility to enforce and implement the various administrative modalities that ensure that the mitigation measures are met, having said this, today we consider phase 3 started”.
López – Gatell Ramírez mentioned that in different geographical areas of the country, Covid-19 infections had exceeded one thousand cases. He highlighted that in the western region, 3,581 cases had been reported, in the central area 7,984, in the north 4,277 and the southern part 1,446.
Lopez Gatell emphasized that, in the entities with the least number of cases, those that manage to control the transmission of the virus, starting May 18, the measures of social distancing can be lifted. “With a reopening of their activities, only if the adequate implementation and compliance with the National Day of Healthy Distance is assured and if the municipalities remain with low transmission and in those that achieve control, they can open on that date”.
What is Phase 3 of the coronavirus?
The federal government, through the Ministry of Health and the General Directorate of Epidemiology, has determined three phases in the contingency for Covid-19 or coronavirus.
Since the beginning of the epidemic in Mexico, last February 27, there have been 8,772 cases and 712 deaths due to the coronavirus.
Yesterday, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said that “the hardest part of the epidemic is yet to come”.
The third phase is the epidemic phase, which would be reached 2 to 3 weeks after scenario two has been reached when cases are already counted in the thousands.
In the worst-case scenario contemplated by the Health Deparment this phase, would imply that no measures will be applied to control the spread of the virus or that no sick person would be cared for, Covid-19 would infect between 0.5% and 1% of the country’s total population, which could represent up to 1.2 million people.
However, under current conditions, it is predicted that between 175,000 and 300,000 people could become ill. Of these people, it is estimated that the minority would require hospitalization in intensive care and that more than 70% of those infected may be asymptomatic, meaning that they would only be carriers.
In this phase 3, it is also asked to avoid the kiss and hug greeting and to suspend public events, in addition to suspending classes in schools where there are active outbreaks, as well as activities in workplaces also with intense outbreaks.
Several of these measures are already in place.
Last month, Lopez-Gatell said that the measures of healthy distance and restricting social mobility would allow entry into the third phase of the coronavirus pandemic with a lower curve of infections requiring hospitalization.
During President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s press conference at the National Palace, the health official explained that phase three would take place. Still, the big difference is that if the measures are vigorously implemented, and people stay at home, instead of having a large epidemic curve that overflows the health system, we will have a smaller curve.
Lopez-Gatell recalled that Mexico was the first country to react to the pandemic, which is why National Distance Health Week began on March 23 and ends on April 19.
He pointed out that this measure does not stop the danger or risk of contagion, because phase three is going to happen, and the risk is that the national health system will be saturated.
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