To deal with the 5th wave of Covid-19, the government has chosen to once again tighten the constraints, without imposing any containment or curfew. Faced with the contagiousness of the Delta variant, doctors are expressing their concerns on BFMTV.
Once again, France is facing a “meteoric” wave of Covid-19, caused by a highly contagious Delta variant, which has reduced the effectiveness of vaccines to 40% against the transmission of the disease. This new deterioration in the health situation, marked by a very clear increase in the number of cases, has pushed the government to impose a further tightening of constraints, without re-containment or curfew.
Thus, Olivier Véran announced that the mask would again be compulsory in all confined spaces, that the 3rd dose of vaccine would be open to all adults from Saturday, five months after their last injection, and that the health pass would now be conditioned to this booster dose. However, the Minister of Health considered that “we could pass this wave without resorting to the most restrictive tools”, specifying that there would be at this stage “neither early closure of shops nor travel restrictions”.
Will the hospital hold up?
“These measures are welcome, in particular the opening of vaccination to everyone”, notes on BFMTV Patrick Pelloux, president of the Association of emergency physicians of France. “Encouraging people to go for this 3rd dose five months later, that seems very important to me and also makes sense”.
Other health professionals, they are showing more reservations, while the peak of hospitalizations could be reached next week, in early December. According to models from the Institut Pasteur, the number of daily hospitalizations linked to Covid-19 should reach 750 at the beginning of December, against 558 currently. France has, this Thursday, 8,755 patients hospitalized for Covid-19, including 1,483 in critical care. “New hospitalizations and admissions in critical care are also sharply increasing nationally,” said Olivier Véran on Thursday.
“We are currently in levels of +15, + 20% activity, so of course when we see a potential new wave coming, we are very, very worried about the effects that this will have on cancer care. “, warned on our antenna Roland Sicard, director of cancerology Sainte-Catherine in Avignon (Vaucluse), stressing” the concrete lack of medical staff “with which they are already confronted.
Close “the wide open faucet that are the schools”
The measures announced “are not sufficient, they lack intelligence, I believe”, also estimated on BFMTV Dr. Jérôme Marty, general practitioner, pointing to the latest changes in health rules at school. Kindergarten and primary classes will no longer be forced to close upon detection of a case of Covid-19, as was the case until now.
“This is not a good thing”, lamented the general practitioner, in particular “when we are told ‘the virus is circulating a lot more’. Currently we have a tap wide open on the viral circulation and it goes through schools Fortunately, safe for children. But we would still have to close this wide open tap, or at least reduce it, dry it up and that’s not what we do “.
The vaccine, “the best weapon”
For the caregiver, this new rule is risky in the sense that the students who could have been infected by a child will not be immediately isolated, but we know that the incubation time of Covid-19 is generally 3 to 5 days, and that it can extend up to 14 days. “We are told ‘we will no longer close the schools but we will test the children on D0. If it is positive, we reject it, and we will test the others’. Except that the one who is positive at D0 has since contaminated two days already. So those who are tested will be negative at that time, but they will contaminate anyway because they will not have been sent home, “he continued.
So for a large part of the medical profession, the only hope lies in vaccination. “The best weapon is vaccination”, points out for example Professor Roland Sicard. “We hope that the 3rd dose will be effective so that this 5th wave does not disrupt hospital structures. We hope that the indicators will stabilize,” he said on BFMTV.