Spain wants to lead the debate on easing the monitoring of the pandemic

Is it time to end the current pandemic surveillance system, which relies on systematic testing, tracing and isolation of cases, including asymptomatic ones? In Spain, despite the virulence of the new wave caused by the Omicron variant, the debate was launched by the head of government himself. On Monday January 10, questioned on Cadena Ser radio, socialist Pedro Sanchez confirmed that the government “Worked for months” on the need to “Respond with new instruments” at “The evolution of Covid-19, from the pandemic we have known to an endemic disease”.

Read our explanations: Article reserved for our subscribers What we know at this stage about the Omicron variant

The same morning, the daily The country revealed that the Spanish health authorities – the Coordination Center for Health Alerts and Emergencies, the Alert Office and the National Epidemiology Center – are preparing a new epidemic surveillance model aimed at treating Covid-19 as a disease acute respiratory tract, using a method similar to that used for monitoring influenza. It would be a question of no longer counting the cases nor of carrying out tests for the slightest symptom, but of moving to a system of “sentinels”, relying on a sample of doctors, health centers and hospitals responsible for providing statistical data that can be extrapolated to the whole country, so as to follow the spread of the disease.

“Promote this debate with European partners”

“It is a debate that we are trying to open on a European scale, Sanchez clarified, noting that the Spanish Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, has spoken about it with several of her European counterparts. Science has given us answers to protect ourselves and we are seeing the fatality rate [du Covid-19] not what he was (…). Therefore, we are creating the conditions so that, with precaution, little by little, we can open this debate, at a technical level, with health professionals, but also at European level, so that we start monitoring with different parameters. the course of this disease. “

No date is officially envisaged, in particular because Spain must respect its international commitments in terms of notification of cases – the European Center for Disease Control and the World Health Organization ask States to count exhaustively positive cases. However, on Wednesday January 12, Carolina Darias clarified that the government “Will begin to assess the adaptation to a new Covid-19 monitoring and control system once the current wave has passed.”

You have 50.94% of this article left to read. The rest is for subscribers only.