Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IMM) Scientific Advisory Board warned citizens against increasing Covid-19 cases and new mutations as we enter the winter. Reminding that mask, distance and hygiene rules should continue to be strictly enforced, the IMM Scientific Advisory Board emphasized that a PCR test should be performed to differentiate the increasing flu cases from corona symptoms.
Like the whole world, Turkey has been fighting against Corona for 2 years. With the removal of restrictions in the summer period, there has been an increase in the number of cases worldwide since Autumn. While the new variant originating from South Africa, named 'Omicron' by the World Health Organization (WHO), spread rapidly, European countries started to return to the restrictions step by step.
According to the latest data, Turkey ranks 6th in the world and 2nd in Europe in terms of total number of cases. According to the data of the Ministry of Health, more than 20 thousand people get sick on average every day and around 200 of our citizens die.
Discussing the measures to be taken against increasing cases, the IMM Scientific Advisory Board took important recommendations.
Here are the warnings of the IMM Scientific Advisory Board:
- Attention should be paid to wearing masks, keeping distance and providing ventilation in closed areas.
- Masks should not be removed except in mandatory situations, and masks should be used meticulously, especially in open areas where two meters of distance with other people cannot be maintained.
- HES code control application must be done in closed areas.
- Care should be taken to keep the windows open in closed environments.
- Ventilation in places without windows should be done with one hundred percent clean air. It should not be in places that are not ventilated in this way.
- In restaurants and cafes that do not have open spaces, the length of stay should be short, and care should be taken to maintain a distance of two meters.
- Masks with high protection must be used in public transportation and large crowds.
Reminding the necessity of vaccination, the IMM Scientific Advisory Board emphasized that it is absolutely necessary to be vaccinated. All scientific sources and studies show that vaccines prevent aggravation of the disease and deaths. While expressing the opinion that the vaccination of those who are not vaccinated should be provided for the protection of public health, it also pointed out the necessity of a reminder dose.
In its statement on the vaccine, the IMM Scientific Advisory Board said, “There is a decrease in the effectiveness of the vaccine as time passes. Therefore, it is necessary to repeat the vaccine 6 months after the second dose. This is the dose of reminder, it should not be neglected.”
It was also emphasized that "individuals need to convince all their relatives to have their vaccination dose completely, just as they get their vaccinations". It was also stated that in addition to being vaccinated, it is necessary to pay the same attention to mask, distance and ventilation measures.
PCR TEST MUST BE DONE
The IMM Scientific Advisory Board also recommended a PCR test in order not to confuse the symptoms of Corona with the flu.
“In the winter, flu and other cold viruses can cause symptoms similar to Covid-19 disease. In case of the slightest doubt or when there are signs of respiratory tract infection such as runny nose, sore throat, cough, a PCR test should be performed by applying to a health institution. In case of positivity, necessary isolation should be provided.”
Finally, IMM Scientific Advisory Board; “Your health and a healthy future are valuable to us. In this period when we enter the winter months and the danger of a new variant is at the door, please take your precautions as much as possible in your own environment. We know that in a world where health resources are shared fairly all over the world, and where the rules of the pandemic, especially widespread vaccination, are treated according to the requirements of science, it is possible to prevent and stop the pandemic," he said.