Of Timothee L’Angevin
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That 5th wave of the Covid-19 epidemic seems to be behind us. Since a few weeks the health situation is improving on all fronts. Evidenced by the lifting of the wearing of a mask during transport on Monday May 16, 2022, announced by Olivier Véran, Minister of Health, Wednesday May 11
We take stock at national level and in the departments.
36,000 positive cases
With just over 36,000 positive cases per day on averagewe find the values we knew just before the Omicron wave erupted in early December 2021. The peak at the end of January 2021 with an average of 360,000 contaminations is far behind.
Mathematically, it is incidence rate continues its decline. The latest figures from Santé Publique France show just over 400 positive cases per 100,000 population. However, we remain within the alert range set by the Health Minister in February (between 300 and 500 per 100,000).
10 departments below the alert threshold
Locally, the situation stabilizes almost everywhere in France. Only five departments are above 500 per 100,000 (Finistère, Morbihan, Somme, Ardennes and Cher).
The departmental anomalies that we had experienced at the end of March, particularly with the earlier return to school in Zone B (the entire northern arc), coupled with still very cold temperatures, have resolved.
A dozen departments are even below the alarm threshold (300 per 100,000): Val-de-Marne, Essonne, Charente, Gironde, Val-d’Oise, Hauts-de-Seine, Yvelines, Paris, Charente-Maritime, Lot-et-Garonne, Dordogne and Haute-Vienne.
R0 continues to decrease
But this indicator must be combined with the effective reproduction rate, the so-called R0 (average number of people that an infected person can infect).
The time has come at the beginning of May 0.68 (vs. 1.79 at the end of January) and continues to decline. As the government points out: “If the effective R is greater than 1, the epidemic is growing, if it is less than 1, the epidemic is declining”.
improvement in hospitals
The situation is also going in the right direction on the healthcare institutions side. number of people hospitalized for Covid has continued to decline since late April. However, we remain at high levels with more than 20,000 patients, a far cry from the lows we experienced, such as last fall (less than 6,500 patients at the lowest).
In which resuscitation services, we are also experiencing a decline, albeit rather tentatively. There are still 1,329 patients there, below the alert threshold set by Olivier Véran (1,500).
In almost all regions the occupancy rate (proportion of patients currently in ICU compared to number of beds) drops to 26.28%. For comparison: at the beginning of March, this figure was 48%.
Still many dead
But the epidemic keeps killing. In the hospital we count 100 dead a day on average a stable value since the beginning of March.
The health minister recalled the possibility of a “boost shot in the fall if a wave ever appears”. The situation in South Africa, which is experiencing an explosion of cases with the emergence of two new subvariants of Omicron, could very well happen to us.
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