Iria Miguéns Blanco and José Polo García.
The warning from the European Center for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC) about a increase in covid cases due to the proliferation of the Omicron sublineages (BA.4 and BA.5) it is already a reality in hospital centers and in Primary Care Spanish. Both health levels have detected an increase in healthcare demand linked to covid in this last week, which leaves Emergency in a “critical” situation, Meanwhile he first level of care does not register “collapses” for now.
“We have seen a increase in casesespecially in the last week. Also, any increase is already critical for us because the Emergencies are very stressed. We have a great care load together with some professionals who are exhausted because they have not been able to rest between one thing and another, ”says Iria Miguéns Blanco, member of the Board of Directors of the Spanish Society of Emergency and Emergency Medicine (Semes).
The specialist assures that the demand for care due to covid has been increasing progressively over the last month, coinciding with the arrival of BA.4 and BA.5 in Spain. “It is noted that we are under a demand for assistance much older than a fortnight ago and even more than a month ago. It has been a gradual ascent and now it is a critical moment for the ER”details Minguéns Blanco, who also recalls that we must “assume” that covid is underdiagnosed because many patients who were before are not being tested.
Increased demand in Primary, but without saturation
Primary Care doctors have also detected that the seventh wave of covid is already in Spain. “We are seeing an increase in cases again. The demand for care has increased and it must be taken into account that by protocol only symptomatic or suspected patients are tested. In that sense, we are seeing a increase in the request of patients with symptoms”assures José Polo García, president of the Spanish Society of Primary Care Physicians (Semergen).
The specialist recalls that the situation in Primary Care has not been good for a long time and with the expectation for the summer due to the lack of substitutions and sick leave, it is worse, however, he assures that “at the moment” the demand for care from covid patients “It is not overcrowding the health centers.”
Mild but more intense symptoms
The trend that health professionals are finding in the pandemic wave so far are patients with mild symptoms, but they are shown with greater intensity compared to what was experienced in the last wave of covid.
“The symptoms that we are finding arethey tend to be mild. However, it does seem that the symptoms are worse than in the last wave. Symptoms are mild, but show more vividly. In addition, we are seeing that many patients are people who have already had covid”, explains Polo García.
Miguéns Blanco is in the same vein: “The symptoms are mild, but in a patient profile that is neither elderly nor immunosuppressed because in these patients it is not the case. In these we have to focus the presence of gravity because pneumonic symptoms continue to be presented. The rest, in general, is mild clinical with catarrhal picture, fever, sore throat or gastrointestinal pain”.
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