The Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2, more contagious, should be the majority in the total number of cases of contamination “Between Christmas and New Year”, had warned, Wednesday, the Minister of Health, Olivier Véran.
Thursday, December 23, Public Health France announced that the number of contaminations in twenty-four hours amounted to 91,608 cases in the country, a figure never before reached. Over the past seven days, the average was 61,274 cases. The previous highest number of infections was in early November 2020, at the peak of the second epidemic wave, with 86,852 cases.
The extreme contagiousness of the Omicron variant could lead to “Disorganization” many sectors from the month of January due to an increase in work stoppages and“Absenteeism”, for his part, warned the scientific council on the epidemic during an online press briefing.
“Absenteeism” could “disorganize” France, warns the scientific council
The “Dazzling” transmission of Omicron could translate in January by “Several hundred thousand” cases per day, explained Olivier Guérin, member of the board. This will “To pose problems in the strategic sectors of operation of our company: food distribution, security, energy, transport, communications and health”, he continued.
According to Olivier Guérin, “It requires thinking [aux] foreclosure rules ” current – isolation can be up to seventeen days for a live contact case with a sick person. “This is really new data that we did not have for the other waves, and which is linked to the propagation speed of Omicron”, he continued, believing that it is a “Essential subject”.
“There will be adjustments to be made which will take into account the severity of the clinical forms” disease caused by Omicron, added another member of the scientific council, Arnaud Fontanet. According to him, these adjustments could also depend on the level of contagiousness of the person at a given moment, determined by tests, as well as of the “Nature of duties” that it occupies.
These possibilities “Relaxations” will have to be accompanied “A strengthening of barrier gestures”, according to Pr Fontanet. “This is a question that will affect the whole of society” and “We must expect that in January we will operate in degraded mode”, he judged, also mentioning the school.
According to first preliminary studies from South Africa, Scotland and England, the Omicron variant appears to cause fewer hospitalizations than Delta. But at the same time, it is much more contagious, which could therefore mathematically cause an increase in the number of hospitalized patients, especially the unvaccinated and the most fragile people.
France reported 84,272 new cases of Covid-19 on Wednesday, which is a record since the start of the pandemic. The Minister of Health had already warned Wednesday that the country would exceed “Very likely 100,000 contaminations per day by the end of the month”.
Emmanuel Macron recommends a “preventive test” before Christmas
Faced with this epidemic resurgence, President Emmanuel Macron again called on the French on Thursday to “Take care of each other”. He wrote in a tweet:
” Happy Holidays to all ! To those who will have the joy of getting together with their family for Christmas: barrier gestures, a preventive test to reassure, and, in the event of a symptom, we isolate ourselves, we alert. To those mobilized to treat and protect us: thank you. Let’s take care of each other. “
Mr. Macron repeated his message in a video posted on the TikTok social network. It is necessary, “Even if you are vaccinated, test yourself or go for a test to be sure that you are not a carrier of the virus before finding your loved ones”, he said. And then “Whether it is a first dose or it is the booster, it is time to get vaccinated”, he insisted.
“Even when you have had the two doses or when you have been infected, the booster, when the time is right, protects you, it greatly reduces the serious forms”, he continues. “Do it for yourself, for your loved ones, now, again, he urges. We are organized for it. “ On the eve of Christmas Eve, pharmacies and other screening places were however overcrowded all over France.
Prefects and elected officials asked to cancel their 2022 vows ceremonies
The prefects and elected officials were invited by Gérald Darmanin to cancel their traditional New Year’s greetings ceremonies “For the sake of consistency and exemplarity”, while the government asked the French to limit gatherings in the face of Covid-19.
“For the sake of consistency and exemplarity and in order to protect ourselves collectively against the appearance of clusters which would have the effect of accelerating the spread of the virus, we ask you not to organize the traditional greeting ceremonies”, wrote the Minister of the Interior in a telegram dated Tuesday and co-signed by the Minister of Territorial Cohesion, Jacqueline Gourault.
Prefects are also asked to “Relay this message” with elected officials to encourage them to cancel the organization of vows “Face-to-face, regardless of the format chosen”.
The Prime Minister, Jean Castex, had already asked, last Friday, the town halls to give up the New Year’s festivities, in particular the concerts and fireworks, and announced that the consumption of alcohol would be prohibited on the public highway.