isolate yourself for a shorter time, but better


Dear subscribers,

Far from the figures of last spring, the latest statistics on Covid-19 are still worrying. To avoid a second wave, the government must improve its “Test-tracing-isolation”. Reduce the time ofisolation for it to be better accepted is a first step. Suggest tests faster is another. Before probable next measures, warned the Scientific Council. You have to take your pain patiently because the race vaccine experiences a first slowdown with the suspension of a clinical trial. However, the next few months promise to be difficult with a wave of bankruptcies expected, especially among SMEs and VSEs. School, handicapped by its delay in digital tools, will it be better armed this time?

Good reading,

Camille Lestienne, journalist at Figaro.

1. Fortnight or seven?

In Bouches-du-Rhône, the resurgence of serious cases due to the coronavirus worries doctors. Here at the European Hospital in Marseille. ERIC GAILLARD / REUTERS

The threat of a second wave intensifies. In its daily report, the Directorate General of Health said last night that 8,577 additional cases had been identified in France in the past 24 hours. That’s more than the last two days. If the indicators do not panic yet, it is clear that the epidemic is taking off again. Especially in some departments. All this suggests the very imminent adoption of new measures, or the strengthening of existing ones, warns the Science Department of Figaro. “We must not wait 15 days. We must act now, locally, where the epidemic is most dynamic ”, estimates epidemiologist Arnaud Fontanet. In Marseille, hospitals are already under pressure. A situation certainly still very far from that of last spring but which worries. “We would like to warn about this rise in intensive care admissions which, unfortunately, is exponential, emphasizes a doctor. “It’s a funny war that’s going on, notes Cyrille Vanlerberghe in his editorial. A situation of waiting, where some begin to doubt the peril that threatens us. ” It would be a mistake, however. The Science and Medicine editor of the Figaro calls on the government to define a clear tracing and isolation strategy. “The second wave can still be avoided

Self-isolate yes, but for how long? The question is asked this week and will be decided on Friday during a Defense Council. The government is in favor of a reduction in the fortnight. “You are more contagious in the first five days or after symptoms or after a positive test. And then this contagiousness decreases very significantly, and beyond a week, it remains but it is very weak“, Argues the Minister of Health, Olivier Véran. “Eight well respected days are better than 14 badly respected days ”, adds Martin Hirsch, general manager of the AP-HP. The Scientific Council has given its approval but denounces the shortcomings of the isolation strategy, however central in the fight against the virus. And also criticizes the French too often reluctant to respect the instructions. It must be said that today the doctrine on isolation is complex. Tested positive, symptomatic or in case of contact, the Sciences du Figaro reminds you of the rules to follow. Constraints to which even the Prime Minister is constrained after having been in contact with Christian Prudhomme, the director of the Tour de France, tested positive.

2. New tests while waiting for vaccines

Faced with the congestion of analytical laboratories, the government wants to improve its testing strategy. DAMIEN MEYER / AFP

Always more tests. To alleviate the isolation measures, the government is banking on improving tests. In recent days, analytical laboratories, subjected to an infernal pace, have quickly been overwhelmed by demand. Endless queue in some regions, lengthened results deadlines, a situation “abnormal»For Olivier Véran. Rapid tests for the coronavirus, called “antigenic testsWill be deployed from this week, said the Minister of Health. Results are delivered within 15-20 minutes. A little less reliable, they would still make it possible to isolate a carrier of the virus more quickly. Access to tests should also be improved by “two to three weeks“. Yet, practiced so widely, the test strategy is very expensive for Social Security, more than 250 million euros per month. Between testing and isolation, tracing is also strained. Social security “guardian angel brigades”, responsible for tracing the chain of contacts of positive cases, are struggling to keep pace. The numbers will climb to 5,000 in the coming days. “To each his own method: I take the calendar and I help them to retrace the progress of each day, says one of them. What they did in the morning, who they ate with, etc. In this case, the call can last between 30 and 45 minutes.»

The vaccine race is fraught with pitfalls. Donald Trump may promise Americans a vaccine before the end of the year, but getting a vaccine to market cannot be so quick. The World Health Organization (WHO) said it did not expect a “generalized vaccinationAgainst the Covid-19 before the middle of next year. Phase 3 of clinical trials – massive tests on volunteers – in which many laboratories are involved cannot be accelerated for safety reasons. The pharmaceutical group AstraZeneca has also announced to suspend its trials with the appearance of a “potentially unexplained illness», Probably a serious side effect, in one participant. Depending on the length of the investigations, this could have an impact on the tight development schedule. If the date of availability of vaccines is still unknown, their prices are starting to be revealed. For the vaccine developed jointly by Sanofi and GSK, it will be less than 10 euros we learned. That of AstraZeneca is announced at 2.50 euros per unit at cost price. Reasonable prices, thanks to funding provided by countries.

3. The endless repercussions of the Covid

French SMEs are threatened with bankruptcy in the coming months. Jérôme Rommé –

An insufficiently armed school. A week after the start of the school year, the OECD publishes its annual survey on education, this year accompanied by a study on the impact of Covid. According to the organization, “the equivalent of a third of a year of schoolingHas been lost due to the pandemic. We must now reconcile back to school and health security. The use of digital tools has become essential, but France has left with “disabilities», «as the use of digital tools in learning was far from common before the health crisis», Ensures the OECD, studies in support. A delay that will have to be made up as the closures of schools or classes will multiply. With the arrival of winter viruses, however, the rules for excluding children will have to be relaxed. This is already the case with the many confusing colds. The president of the French Pediatric Society (SFP) advocates pragmatism: “Either the child has significant symptoms – fever, and / or respiratory discomfort, and / or digestive disturbances -, and should be seen and tested, or he has only minor symptoms, such as a nose that sinks accompanied by a small cough, and he can continue his life normally. ” However, in the event of the closure of a school or nursery or if the child is identified as a contact case, one of the parents may benefit from partial unemployment, the Ministry of Health announced in a press release.

Companies threatened with bankruptcy. Protected artificially for months by the various mechanisms put in place until the summer, companies in difficulty should now jostle themselves in the commercial courts. The hecatomb of bankruptcies is expected to occur on the eve of spring 2021. If large SMEs and mid-size companies stand out, VSEs and small SMEs are the main victims. Enough to fuel the accusations made by the vice-president and the president of the National Rally. Jordan Bardella and Marine Le Pen both said only € 3 billion of the stimulus package will be allocated to SMEs. It is to forget, analyzes the Service economy of Figaro, all the other measures included in the plan to which they will be able to claim in the same way as the other companies. The long-term partial activity scheme is already being maintained “until next summer», Announced Élisabeth Borne. One thing is certain, the Covid-19 bill, already estimated at between 35 and 50 billion dollars, will weigh heavily on the global insurance sector. Cancellation of events, mortgage insurance and credit insurance are particularly affected, while business interruption insurance is a source of controversy in many countries.

4. What remains prohibited

In compliance with barrier gestures and the rules of physical distance, most activities have resumed. What remains prohibited and what will still have to wait:

  • While the state of health emergency has been extended in Guyana and Mayotte until October 30 inclusive, in metropolitan France, shows, concerts and other meetings of more than 5,000 people will not be authorized until October 30. , except derogations from the prefect in green areas only.
  • The discos remain closed until the end of September.

5. Reflexes to keep

A few simple actions can limit the spread of the virus. Here they are :

  • Wash your hands every hour
  • Cough or sneeze into the crease of your elbow
  • Use disposable tissues
  • Avoid kissing or shaking hands
  • Wear a mask in public spaces when respect for physical distances is not guaranteed.

Covid-19 is transmitted by droplets (respiratory secretions), by close contact with an infected person, especially when the latter coughs or sneezes. But it could also be transmitted through the air. The virus also remains viable for a few hours on different surfaces.

The disease manifests itself in several symptoms. In 9 out of 10 cases, this results in a fever below 39 ° C. According to the World Health Organization, this fever is most often accompanied by fatigue, signs of shortness of breath and a dry cough. Often a loss of smell and taste.

6. What to do in case of symptoms?

The most important thing is to get tested. According to the recommendations of the Ministry of Health, in the event of symptoms, you should stay at home and contact your doctor who will order a test. While waiting for the result, you must isolate yourself, wear a mask and prepare a list of people you could have infected.

If the test is positive, the Primary Health Insurance Fund will contact people likely to be infected. You must then remain isolated for at least 8 days, taking care not to infect your loved ones. Watch your health. In case of fever, take paracetamol. If necessary, schedule a follow-up remote consultation with your doctor. If you feel that you are having difficulty breathing, call 15.

If the test is negative, contact your doctor and follow his instructions.

See you next week !


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