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Turkish Covid Panorama - Minister Koca - Dr M. Ceyhan

By Alejandra Pousa, 06/05/21

Minister Fahrettin Koca made a statement after the Cabinet meeting finished yesterday. He pointed out that the effects of the curfew would be evaluated later in this month but, for the time being, when looking at these last 10 days, the number of hospitalizations was going down and that he could say this trend would go on: ''we hope to see the same effect in the number of severe cases and deaths''.

He also added that the number of already administered vaccines was some 24 million: two doses, administered to 10 million people,  and 14,352,956 for those who had had their first dose.

Dr. Mehmet Ceyhan, pediatric infectologist of the Hacettepe Hospital, evaluated the current situation for CNNTurk TV, interview which has also been reproduced by Hürriyet newspaper.

He said that in a context where so may countries have had problems with vaccine suppliers, ordering more than needed to secure the doses was common practice, like the case of Canada ordering an amount four times greater than their population. ''Vaccinating is definitely the way to end the pandemic.'' When asked about local versions of vaccines he estimated we would have a locally produced shot viable for use at the beginning of the autumn.

Ceyhan made a point out of being careful when interpreting the different trends in terms of numbers of cases. He said that a total lock down had never been implemented yet; the present curfew is referred to by the Health Minister as a ''tight'' lock down. ''Before the curfew, we saw massive population movements. Between the 16-17/05 people will return home. Some will be able to extend their stay for some days. Then we will see how this goes. We must be organized. We will go on verifying fluctuations in the number of cases until we reach complete vaccination.''

''As for a total re-opening, it will have to be done in stages: once we lift a regulation, a week has to go by to be able to re-evaluate. These days, practically 100% of the infections can be attributed to the Kent variant. Since more than an eighty per cent of +65 people have been immunized, now we are seeing a higher incidence in youngsters and children. The number of cases in children is incredibly high and they constitute a high transmission factor. If schools were re-opened, we would have to keep all the other preventive measures in place.''

Source: Hürriyet



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