"In practice, it does not guarantee any effect, especially for those people who are already vaccinated. In fact, this has been one of the reasons why many people do not get the vaccine", said the doctor this Wednesday in statements to Lusa.
If both vaccinated and unvaccinated are obliged to take the test to travel, he argued, "then, at this point, it is worthless to take the vaccine when we are all obliged to take the test".
"So, it is a public health measure that at this stage does not guarantee effectiveness, not least because we have a controlled covid-19 situation, it has never been out of control", he stressed.
Angola still maintains the requirement for a pre-shipment covid-19 test with a negative result for entries into the country, carried out up to 48 hours before departure, according to presidential decree n.º 241/22, released in October 2022.
Commenting this Wednesday on the aforementioned requirement, Jeremias Agostinho, a specialist in public health, insisted that it "must be avoided" as it burdens, above all, the journey of those who intend to return to Angola or want to disembark for tourism or business.
He also pointed to the need to make "an exception", for the test to be carried out, particularly for people who have not taken the covid-19 vaccine.
"For those who already have the vaccine, they do not need to carry out a covid-19 test and those who do not have the vaccine must necessarily take the test. This would make people choose more to get the vaccine and less to not do it", he defended.
According to Jeremias Agostinho, the mandatory pre-shipment test for covid-19 may also give rise to some compensation scheme, such as "gasosa" (small corruption), above all, on the part of those who "have the responsibility of supervising the entry of citizens".
"These are measures to be avoided and, from the point of view of public health, they do not have the necessary effectiveness. Even in many European and American countries, for example, these tests have already been suspended", he noted.
The tests "are once again required for countries that have had a slightly more complicated covid situation, such as China, but for other countries, such as Portugal, for example, it is not necessary to present tests or a vaccine certificate", concluded the doctor.
Since January 7, Portugal has once again demanded that passengers on flights from China present a negative test carried out no more than 48 hours before the trip when boarding.
On 16 November last year, when the Ministry of Health announced that it would start administering the fourth dose of the vaccine, the Secretary of State for Public Health, Pinto de Sousa, reported that 104,424 cases of covid-19 had been registered to date, 102,297 recovered, 1922 deaths and 215 active, of which 53 symptomatic and 162 asymptomatic.
Angola publishes a daily bulletin on vaccination against covid-19, but has stopped releasing statistics on infections.
According to the database of the research center of the Johns Hopkins University, until February 21, Angola totaled 105,184 cases, of which 1931 deaths.
By February 21, 24.5 million doses of vaccine had been administered, with a coverage rate (one dose) of the target population (aged 12 years and over) of 80.8 percent and a basic scheme (single dose or two doses) of 44.92 percent.
The last presidential decree on the subject extinguished the multisectoral commission responsible for managing the pandemic and dropped the mandatory use of a face mask (except in health units and pharmacies), as well as the test upon arrival at Luanda airport.