The seventh wave of the Covid-19 epidemic is accelerating in France, and recommendations to reinstate the protective mask, especially in transport, are being multiplied by the government, with no certainty that this, along with vaccination, would be enough to stop it. transmission.
Will this wave be a tsunami? At the beginning of this summer, there is another explosion of cases. More than 147,000 cases were reported last night, Tuesday night, by the French public health service, 54% more than a week ago and the highest level since the end of April.
This strong increase, which is associated with the emergence of new highly contagious Omicron variants capable of bypassing immune defenses, is generally observed throughout Europe.
Most of the restrictions began to be lifted in mid-March. However, on Tuesday, French Prime Minister Elizabeth Bourne called on the prefects and health authorities to encourage the use of protective masks “in crowded places” and in “enclosed spaces”, especially “in public transport”, where since May 16 no is now mandatory.
So far these are “recommendations” without a mandatory character.
Bourne also called for “prevention messages to be multiplied,” such as “indoors should be ventilated regularly,” “diagnostic tests should be performed as soon as the first symptoms appear, and people should be isolated immediately if tested positive.”
– Inside the trains for the holidays –
As the first departures of citizens for holidays have begun, the president and CEO of the French railway company SNCF Jean-Pierre Farado called on the passengers to put on the mask again at the stations and inside the trains “feeling their responsibility as citizens”. “We have to protect our staff, we have to protect our travelers,” he said.
The big question is, as always, whether the increase in infections will translate into an increase in hospitalizations.
In South Africa and to a lesser extent in Portugal, which has already gone through the wave, the impact on hospitals has been more limited than in previous waves.
In France, 15,496 people were treated yesterday, Tuesday, with Covid, of which 898 in intensive care units.
– The booster doses –
In the face of rising cases, governments and scientists are insisting on booster doses of vaccines.
Although protection against vaccines decreases over time against infection, they remain effective against the risk of developing serious forms of the disease.
Yesterday, the Prime Minister asked the citizens “to check their vaccination program individually”, especially those over 60 years old and the most vulnerable.
Only a quarter of those entitled to it have taken a second bailout against Covid, a “clearly insufficient” percentage, the government announced last week.
“The recommendation for the third dose was made in April, when the virus was starting to decline. said Anne-Claude Cremier, an infectious disease specialist at Saint-Louis Hospital in Paris.