PARIS (Reuters) – The screening and vaccination campaign will be stepped up in Moselle, Olivier Véran announced on Friday during a trip to this department in eastern France where the authorities suspect several hundred cases of contamination by the variant of the coronavirus of South African origin.
The Minister of Health, on the other hand, ruled out at this stage new restrictive measures as demanded by certain elected officials such as the LR mayor of Metz, François Grosdidier.
The coronavirus “circulates in Moselle with a higher incidence than in the rest of the Grand Est region, close to 300 per 100,000 inhabitants over a week”, Olivier Véran reminded the press after interviews at the Agency Regional Health Authority and the Metz prefecture.
“Suspicious cases of South African and Brazilian variants have emerged in recent days. The first sequencing tends to attest to the hypothesis that these are variants of South African origin,” he added.
“The number of variant cases is increasing, it is now 100 new cases per day,” said the minister, specifying that the most probable thesis was that of “community dissemination” of this variant.
Olivier Véran announced that the authorities would intensify the “test-trace-isolate” policy in the department: “Any positive case of coronavirus will now be considered as suspect of a variant until proven guilty.”
The vaccination campaign will also be strengthened, added the minister. Two thousand additional doses of Moderna vaccine will thus be made available, in particular for people aged 75 and over.
Regarding additional protective measures, no consensus has emerged, said Olivier Véran: “Some elected officials pleaded for immediate confinement of all or part of the Lorraine region, others pleaded for an early closure of schools, one week before school holidays in the region. “
The Minister will continue his consultations in Paris, with his counterpart from Education Jean-Michel Blanquer in particular.
“I made a commitment to come back very quickly to the elected representatives of the territory to consider with them possible measures if we consider that they could be necessary”, he added.
(Jean-Stéphane Brosse, edited by Jean-Michel Bélot)
Source: Challenges en temps réel : accueil by www.challenges.fr.
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