BAKU, Azerbaijan, May 12. Azerbaijan can be proud of its efforts to fight the COVID-19, Rector of Ariel University (Israel) Albert Pinhasov, Professor of Dr. Miriam and Sheldon G. Adelson School of Medicine said in an exclusive interview with Trend, while visiting Azerbaijan.
"The main purpose of my visit is to attend the conference on the COVID-19 pandemic, post-COVID complications, as well as the impact of the virus on future generations. It’s a big pleasure to have the opportunity of meeting in person after nearly three years of virtual meetings. The conference was organized at the highest level and was attended by participants from various countries. The greatest tribute must be paid to the event organizer, Professor Vugar Aliyev," he said.
Pinhasov emphasized his visit to Guba District Central Hospital, which was one of the actively operating hospitals throughout the pandemic. He expressed his surprise at doctors’ professionalism in the fight against the COVID-19.
He stressed that Azerbaijan and Israel have similar concepts of healthcare development.
"One of the goals of the conference was the exchange of experiences between attendants. Both Azerbaijan and Israel have collected big data in this regard and will be able to jointly go over it. The joint work will also be carried out to study the impact of COVID-19 vaccines on different groups of people. The countries would like to reinforce the interaction in technology transfer, cybersecurity, personalized medicine, quantum physics, and other areas toward large-scale collaboration between Israel-Azerbaijan scientific communities. The relations between the two countries are becoming much stronger, which serves as a source of pride for people in both countries. I believe science is the very link that brings people even closer," said the professor.
According to him, joint platforms are being created between Israel and Azerbaijan. One of such platforms is the Israel - Azerbaijan International Association (Aziz) led by Lev Spivak.
"In April 2022, Israel's Finance Minister Avigdor Lieberman and Tourism Minister Yoel Razvozov paid a visit to Azerbaijan. One of the goals of my visit to the country is to explore ways of strengthening bilateral cooperation in science. Many talented Azerbaijani students are currently studying in Israel. Thus, there are lots our countries could learn from each other," he stated.
Pinhasov believes that post-COVID-19 diseases, as well as the impact of COVID-19 on the next generations, are among the pressing issues.
"For example, a number of pregnant women with COVID-19 gave birth to healthy babies, but we don’t yet know how this would affect these children in the future. This will be one of the main aspects to be further investigated. Post-COVID diseases include autoimmune diseases, as well as metabolic diseases in the cardiovascular system. COVID-19 also affects the central nervous system and the fetus," the professor stressed.
According to him, the conference also addressed the impact of vaccines against COVID-19.
"During this period, the world set a record for administering vaccines. New generation vaccines have been used for the first time. However, the world has not enough information about the possible effect of these vaccines on human beings. Various clinical trials are already underway. The main focus should be placed on using vaccines with the least risk of side effects. The pandemic has taught us a lot. The world has already changed both in the medical and scientific fields. Furthermore, the relationship between people has also changed. I do hope that the medicine of the future will be much safer," he said.
As Pinhasov noted, holding the face-to-face conference shows that we have already learned how to deal with the pandemic. Due to the fact that new strains of coronavirus are much easier for people to cope with, the world’s situation has improved a lot," he concluded.