The threshold of 160,000 deaths linked to Covid-19 has been exceeded in France on the back of the ninth wave of the epidemic, according to figures published on Tuesday by Public Health France. A total of 160,008 people died, of which 130,617 were in hospital. The bar of 150,000 dead had been crossed on 8 July.
“The epidemic has not disappeared, the virus still kills and strikes again”, launched Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne at the end of November at the National Assembly. In 2022 alone, which is coming to an end, France has almost 40,000 deaths as a result of Covid-19.
The epidemic, which had experienced a lull after a post-return wave, started again for more than three weeks. It is carried by Omicron’s BQ.1.1 subvariant, which is gradually replacing the BA.5.
Almost three years after the start of the pandemic, this new wave is still increasing pollution, but at a slower pace in recent days. The horizon for the peak of the epidemic is still uncertain.
On Tuesday evening, there were 23,217 admitted patients, of which 2,104 were new admissions. One hundred and thirty-five patients have died at the hospital within the past 24 hours.
Covid-19 is contributing to an early and increasing flu, but also to bronchiolitis at record high levels for more than ten years in infants. This “triple epidemic”, which, as in other countries, affects an already proven health system, is “completely unprecedented” and its development difficult to predict, emphasized at the beginning of December Public Health France.
Vaccination in slow motion
However, the anti-Covid booster vaccination remains behind in France – like that against the flu – despite a recent upswing. Only “2.8 million people have been vaccinated against Covid-19 since the beginning of October, this is much less than our European neighbors”, the Minister of Health François Braun emphasized last week, referring specifically to the recall campaign.
The minister called for a start, hammering out that everyone could “get vaccinated” with an anti-covid reminder, while the autumn vaccination announcement was criticized for its confusion. This message was passed on to professionals on Tuesday by the Directorate-General for Health.
When using the mask, the government always refrains from making it an obligation in closed and frequented places, to the chagrin of nursing staff, epidemiologists or patient associations.