Colombia is planning what will be a full, safe and fast reopening, with a pilot in Barranquilla that will be unveiled in the emergency list starting June 1.
The idea, 14 months after the declaration of mandatory preventive confinement, is for the country to once again have a real revitalization, in accordance with the specified requirements.
The Minister of Health, Fernando Ruiz, explained, “We are obligated to revitalize this country, because we have restricted it from the biosecurity regulations, which are the same regulations that allowed us to limit the impact of this epidemic.”
With a third epidemic peak already ending in cities like the capital of Atlantico and Leticia, and taking into account vaccination progress, along with infection levels, the plan plans a process to revitalize the educational, cultural and entertainment sectors.
We have thought about how to reactivate it to generate the confidence the country requires and restore its functions. If we do it by getting herd immunity, it will be December or January, but we can’t wait for the virus to go away and we will get our lives back. The virus mutates and changes and we have seen that.
Unfortunately, we will have people dying from Covid-19 in the future, but not to the same degree. “
The protocols will not have the appearance of a restriction, but of a return, and although it is not known how the surveillance will be implemented, Johns Hopkins University in the United States will follow this process in the pilots.
The intent is to achieve sectoral expression that includes the revitalization of employment, education, physical and cultural activities, tourism and leisure.
The model seeks not to have a relapse once it starts, and that this is done through a practical approach, directed towards the needs that people feel and caring for their mental health, and that there is a priority for youth and women, and that they are. It was done in an intersectoral framework. The openings of the municipalities and departments on the different areas and care services will be categorized by five variables.
The first is the number of intensive care and intermediate care beds, the second is the number of deaths due to Covid-19, the third is the number of vaccines applied, the fourth is the number of diagnostic tests, and the fifth is the population. And population. There are two axes in the matrix for the opening of health services and spaces in cities. One of them is based on the Municipal Epidemiological Resilience Index, which is calculated by variables such as vaccination, life expectancy (weighing 0.4) and reproduction rate (0.2).
The other axis is the health system capacity index in the region in which the combined capacity of the intensive care beds and those for intermediate care, with a weight of 0.8, is considered, in addition to the last month’s test of 0.2.
For example, in the off-pilots scenario in Barranquilla and Leticia, the next regions with the best conditions to open are Atlantico, Santa Marta, Bogota, Antioquia, Cartagena and Cesar, and the worst scenario would be Vichada, Coca, Choco, Guaviare or San Andres.
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Business representatives welcomed the initiative presented to them by the Minister of Health last week. “The epidemic is challenging the country to adapt to the new reality and to identify new ways on the fronts related to production, work, education and leisure activities,” said Julian Dominguez Rivera, President of Confecámaras and the National Trade Union Council.
“It is imperative that we continue to strictly monitor vital protection measures and have a balance so that companies do not continue to lose income and jobs due to the mandatory closure, which, unfortunately, the blockade has been added due to the national strike since April 28, which has disrupted hundreds of thousands of companies.
In his view, shutting it down suddenly seriously hurts manufacturing, inventory and distribution plans. The same thing happens when consumer access is blocked.
Rosemery Quintero, from Akobe, said the plan is necessary as the country is heading towards a new normal. In his opinion, “If any biosafety rule is not respected in this protest scenario, why should we imprison us. We really have to learn to take care of ourselves and regain normalcy in life and work,” he said.
Guillermo Gómez, president of the Acudres Restaurants Association, said the sector seriously affected by the restrictions supports the official initiative.
“We believe what needs to be done is that if the decision is made, it must be consolidated and permanent because the most difficult thing for the economy in general, not just for our sector, is the instability of measures.” He indicated that this would promote a stable rhythm in which companies have the capacity. Planning to re-establish its operations. “