Covid 19: Understanding The New Measures In 5 Questions
On November 25, 2021, Health Minister Olivier Véran announced new health measures to deal with the 5th wave of the Covid-19 epidemic. If you are wondering when you should do your booster dose to keep your health pass or in which places the wearing of the mask is now mandatory, here is a small summary in 5 questions.
1- Who is concerned by the vaccine recall?
Faced with the exponential increase of contaminations in France, Olivier Véran gave a press conference on November 25, 2021.
The Minister of Health then announced that the vaccine booster was going to be extended to all adults to deal with the 5th wave of the Covid-19 epidemic.
In practice, the booster injection more commonly known as the third dose of vaccine, will be available for all adults aged 18 years and above from 27 November 2021.
From this date, all adults over 18 years of age will be able to receive their Pfizer or Moderna booster dose from their GP, a nurse or midwife, a pharmacy or a vaccination centre.
2- When should I receive my booster dose?
All adults 18 years of age and older who have already received two doses of Covid vaccine may receive a booster dose 5 months after the previous injection.
With this expansion of the vaccine booster rules, 19 million French people become eligible for a third dose. Olivier Véran has moreover assured that France has enough vaccines for everyone.
According to the conclusions of the scientific authorities and in particular the High Authority of Health, this recall allows to obtain an optimal immunity against the virus of Covid 19 and its Delta variant.
3- What happens if you don't get your booster dose?
To encourage as many French people as possible to get vaccinated or receive the 3rd dose of the Covid vaccine, the government has specified that without the booster dose, your health pass will be disabled.
The overall validity of the Health Pass is 7 months after the last injection.
So if you want to retain the benefit of your health pass, you must receive your booster dose between 5 months and 7 months after the last injection.
- if you are 65 years of age or older and have not received your booster dose within this time frame, your Health Pass will no longer be active from 15 December 2021
- if you are between the ages of 18 and 64 and do not receive your booster dose by the deadline, your Health Pass will be deactivated from January 15, 2022.
Note: The Health Minister also announced a change for people who are not vaccinated and do PCR or antigenic tests to benefit from the Health Pass.
These tests are now valid for 24 hours instead of 72 hours previously.
4- In which places is the mask mandatory?
Because vaccination is not enough to stem the 5th wave of the epidemic, the Minister of Health has asked the French to pull together and resume the barrier gestures.
Specifically, it will again be necessary to:
- avoid kissing each other
- air rooms and offices regularly
- use hydroalcoholic gel to clean your hands frequently
- and above all to put on the mask in closed or very busy places.
From November 26, 2021, the wearing of the mask becomes mandatory again in all public places, even in those where the health pass is requested.
In addition, prefects have the option of making mask wearing mandatory outside during special events such as Christmas markets.
To be noted: it should be noted, by the way, that Christmas markets will only be accessible to people with a valid health pass.
5- What are the changes in the schools?
The Minister of Health also announced that the health protocol in schools will change.
This week, because of the 5th wave, closed classes reached a record 8500, according to Education Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer.
To avoid too many class closures, Olivier Véran said that classes will no longer be closed from the first case of Covid.
Starting next week, this rule will be replaced by tests in the classes. This systematic testing of the class if a student is positive is an extension to all of France of an experiment that was conducted in 10 departments.
The aim of this change is to limit the closure of classes. The tests, whether carried out in primary schools by laboratories or by parents in pharmacies, will of course be free.