With two weeks left before the end of the national influenza vaccination campaign, scheduled for July 9, many municipalities in the region still have low immunization rates. According to data extracted Friday afternoon, 25, from the Commission for Influenza 2021, from 13 municipalities that are part of the 13th Regional Health Coordination (CRS), headquartered in Santa Cruz do Sul, eight have not yet reached 40% of vaccination coverage. Two of them – Gramado Xavier and Paso do Soprado – are still about 20%.
Contrary to this reality, there is Mato Litau. According to the vaccination campaign committee data, Orchid City has already reached 60.1% vaccination coverage, and it is the district municipality with the highest rate. Herveiras came in second place in the immunization ranking with 52%, and in third place was Vale do Sol with 48.1%.
Mato Leitão’s vaccination coverage rate is 16.28% higher than the regional average, which is 43.82%. The target population in the 14 municipalities covered by CRS 13 is 145,674 people. In Rio Grande do Sul, the campaign’s target population exceeded 5 million people, and as of Friday afternoon, coverage in the state was 40.6%.
Awareness contributes to the good performance of the municipality
The Family Health Strategy (ESF) doctor in Mato Letao Paulo Ricardo Tomaz da Silva believes that due to vaccination against the novel coronavirus, many people have given up their influenza vaccination. However, he points out, influenza vaccination is just as important as Covid-19.
“The symptoms are very similar. Therefore, when you are immunized against influenza, it is always possible to rule out a differential diagnosis. People need to perceive that there is no point in just being vaccinated against Covid. You also have to be immunized against influenza,” he stresses. He particularly highlights the need To immunize priority groups against these two diseases.
Regarding Orchid City, the doctor reported that thanks to the work of community health agents and the participation of the entire health management team, it is possible to achieve a positive outcome in the influenza vaccination campaign. For him, the city’s high vaccination coverage is a reflection of the outreach work that has been carried out for years in Mato Letau.
He estimates that “community health agents are always doing very important work in this regard.” Silva also notes that because it is a small municipality, communication and approach are easier. “We have 100% ESF coverage here. All homes have a community health agent who visits and there is a family health team attached to this home.”
In addition, all community health workers share a list of people who need a flu vaccination, according to the exact area they work in, allowing for an active search for patients.
• According to Doctor Paulo Ricardo Tomas da Silva, especially before the COVID-19 pandemic, it was common for people to have doubts about developing flu-like symptoms after receiving a flu shot. “The flu vaccine actually protects against some strains of flu, and it doesn’t protect against all of the viruses we have that cause flu-like symptoms,” he explains.
• In this sense, he explains that even with influenza vaccination, it is still possible to contract influenza due to other viruses. Therefore, it reinforces the population’s need to be aware of this, which helps reduce people’s rejection of this immunization.
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