Growing distrust over vaccines worries EU leaders

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The increased mistrust among the population in future vaccines against the coronavirus, which in some cases are expected to require medical approvals imminently, worries the leaders of the European Union, who are already preparing the ground for the distribution of the first doses immunity.

“The number of people who distrust vaccines is growing and we must transmit their value to them “, summed up the president of the European Council, Charles Michel, at the end of an informal three-hour videoconference in which the bulk of the time was spent talking about the pandemic.

The objective is improve coordination among the EU Member States, and vaccines were one of the issues to be discussed, after some of the laboratories, such as Pfizer-BionTech or Moderna, have announced “hopeful results” in the effectiveness of its products.

These laboratories have transmitted to Brussels that they hope to be able to request the first commercial authorizations in the second half of next December.

But with surveys such as the one published this week by the Center for Sociological Research (CIS) in Spain, which shows that 47% of the population would not be willing to get vaccinated immediately After the first doses of vaccines arrived, the good news is also becoming a concern.

So much so that the President of the European Council placed the “communication” on pharmaceutical immunization as a priority at the height of “challenges such as storage or transportation” of the doses.

Antigen testing

Leaders thanked the Commission for its recommendation document on antigen testing, as it paves the way for moving towards a “mutual recognition” in different states members of those diagnostic tests now that they are becoming more popular for being faster and cheaper than PCR, although less reliable,

The EC maintains that the PCR remains “the gold standard “of diagnostic methods, but that antigen tests can be used in certain situations.

According to the Commission, they are useful for control an outbreak or monitor risk areas, However, the antigen tests used must offer a minimum sensitivity of 80%, that is, detect at least four out of every five positives.

Unfinishing

The Twenty-seven have “learned from the mistakes” of the first wave spring, and they do not want the withdrawal of the different restrictions that apply in each country or region against this second challenge of the Sars-CoV-1 in autumn to be too fast or abrupt, but “gradual and regressive”.

“We all want to celebrate the Christmas holidays safely, but we also want to enter 2021 safely,” Michel said.

The president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, added that “this time they must manage expectations “ and he advanced that the Community Executive will elaborate a series of recommendations to go back to normality, which will serve to “avoid the risk of yet another wave.”

Travel form

The EC is ready to launch the digital travel form pilot project that capitals commissioned from the Commission four weeks ago to facilitate a harmonized tracking of movements from the EU, explained Von der Leyen.

But for now there are two States that have shown interest in the system, which is not enough to launch the trial, but another 12 countries are compatible with the technical requirements, with which Brussels hopes to be able to start the tests “at the end of the year”.

The virtual summit on the coronavirus took place when Europe is already adding 11,328,473 infections and 279,827 deaths since the start of the pandemic, according to information collected from countries by the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) on EU countries and associated states such as the United Kingdom or Norway.

The latest ECDE newsletter places Luxembourg as the most affected European country currently due to COVID-19, with a cumulative incidence of 1,195 new in the last 14 days out of 100,000 people.

Follow him Austria (1.083), Slovenia (939.8) and Czech Republic (906), while Spain it has an incidence of 513 in the ECDC table, which closes Finland, with 54.

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