The 7,249,800 Quebecers vaccinated

The respect of health measures and the adherence to the vaccine by the population have proved to be among the best in developed countries.

For epidemiologist Benoît Mâsse, from the School of Public Health of the University of Montreal, the majority of the population should receive the hat trick of the year 2021.

“The key in a pandemic is the response of the population. Even in Canada, we have seen that the response to the vaccine varies from one province to another. The vaccination campaign here was very successful because of the people who got on board, ”he says.

Although certain antivax and unfortunate “last-chance parties” have drawn attention, the epidemiologist considers that the irreproachable behavior of a majority of Quebecers has too often been overlooked. Both in terms of compliance with multiple health measures (wearing a mask, compliance with curfews and distancing) and their strong adherence to vaccination.

As of December 20, more than 6.6 million Quebecers aged 5 and over were adequately vaccinated, i.e. just over 78% of the population, according to the most recent watch from the Institut national de santé publique du Québec ( INSPQ). The proportion of Quebecers doubly vaccinated, although lower than that of the Atlantic provinces or British Columbia, is still ahead of Ontario and the Canadian average.

By comparison, Quebec ranks, in terms of adequate vaccination, among the 15 best countries in the world, alongside Iceland (78%) and Malaysia (80%), but behind Spain (81%). ), Cuba (83.7%), Chile (86%) and Portugal (88%), according to the global portrait drawn up on December 20 by Johns Hopkins University.

Dr. Gaston de Serres, medical consultant at the INSPQ and member of the Quebec Immunization Committee, judges that 90% of the effect of a health measure results from the ability to “convince” people and generate the adhesion of the greatest number. “Having a population trust its leaders and science is key. It is the biggest determinant of vaccination, he says. The health passport has also increased membership. With what is happening in our southern neighbors, we realize the importance that a political regime can have on adherence to health measures. “

The two world powers, Russia (vaccination rate below 45%) and the United States (62%), illustrate to what extent the instrumentalisation and political division can overshadow and jeopardize adherence to population measures.

Even in rich countries considered to be among the best organized in Europe, vaccination campaigns have failed, especially in Switzerland (67%), Germany (70%) and Austria (71%).

Francine Dupuis, CEO of the CIUSSS du Center-Ouest-de-l’Île de Montréal, adds that the confidence of the population has been gained step by step in the field, by reaching in particular isolated communities, initially more reluctant to vaccine. “In Montreal, we really entered the heart of our communities, thanks to our community organizers, especially among some who live almost in autarky. It helped not only the vaccination, but the screening, she says. This sensitivity was there at the start. Without this, vaccination coverage would have been much lower in our territory. It was a determining factor. “

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