The government has announced a new round of measures to tackle the fifth wave of the Covid-19 epidemic. Third dose of vaccine, wearing of a mask, health pass … The Minister of Health Olivier Véran listed them this Thursday at noon.
Previously, the Director General of Health, Jérôme Salomon, took stock of the epidemic, with an incidence rate of 193 per 100,000, approaching the alert threshold of 200. Every eleven days, the number of infected double, he said, indicating that the bar of 30,000 contaminations in 24 hours has already been reached this week. This Thursday, November 24, 2021, 8,765 people affected by Covid-19 are hospitalized, including 1,483 in critical care.
In addition, forecasts indicate that the epidemic peak of this fifth wave could be reached at the beginning of December, that is to say next week.
The third dose of the vaccine open to all adults
Following on from this, the Minister of Health announced that access to the third dose of the anti-Covid vaccine is now extended to the entire adult population of the country. The time between the second and third injection is reduced to five months, compared to six until then. These five months also work in the event that a person has been infected with Covid-19 and has been cured of it.
25 million French people are thus affected, of which 6 million have already been vaccinated. They have two months to do so, the minister said.
He also said that France had all the necessary doses on the territory. All health professionals will be able to vaccinate (doctor, pharmacists, physiotherapists, nurses, etc.).
The conditions of validity of the health pass tightened
This vaccination booster will be integrated into the health pass, from January 15 for 18-64 year olds (it will be from December 15 for those over 65). The document will therefore no longer be valid in the absence of a third dose on that date.
In addition to the need for a third injection for the health pass, other conditions for its validity have been added. While a PCR test within 72 hours made it possible to present it properly, this duration will now be reduced to 24 hours, from next Monday, November 29.
The non-vaccinated must therefore be tested every day at their expense (except in the case of contact or medical prescription), to have a valid health pass.
Wearing a mask is compulsory everywhere indoors
Olivier Véran addressed the issue of wearing a mask, indicating that it will now be compulsory everywhere indoors, even when the health pass is requested at the entrance of an establishment (bar, restaurant, etc.). It will also be used at outdoor gatherings that can accommodate a large number of people, such as Christmas markets.
The Minister also recalled the importance of ventilating the rooms, to renew the ambient air. The use of hydroalcoholic gel, sneezing in his elbow or not shaking someone’s hand are also part of the barrier measures put forward.
The Minister of Health, however, recalled that no confinement, no curfew, no closure of shops, or restriction of movement are currently under study.