Covid-19: why the expansion of the booster dose was imposed on the government

The executive is boosting the vaccine booster campaign against Covid-19. Olivier Véran announced, Thursday, November 25, an expansion of the booster dose to all of the adult population. From January 15, all people over 18 will have to prove with their health pass that they will have received a booster dose at most seven months after the previous injection. In addition, the minimum period between the second and the third dose is reduced to five months, whereas it had previously been six months.

To push even more recalcitrant people to be vaccinated, the validity period of PCR and antigen tests is reduced to twenty-four hours for the health pass. Wearing a mask is compulsory “Everywhere indoors” in places open to the public, including places where the pass is requested. “The prefects will also be empowered to make it compulsory to wear a mask for outdoor events, such as for example Christmas markets”, which will be subject to the pass, said Mr. Véran.

  • Why such an acceleration?

Until now, only those over 65 could benefit from an additional dose of vaccine, as well as vulnerable people with co-morbidities, caregivers and immunocompromised people. Eligibility for the booster starting six months after the last injection, the target population increased slowly from September and is swelling day by day. But, by November 21, only half of it had taken the plunge. An insufficient pace for the government, which fears the impact that the fifth wave of the epidemic could have on the hospital system. According to the latest projections from the Institut Pasteur, the daily number of hospital admissions could reach 750 by 1is December, with a peak ranging “Up to 1,000 or even 1,500”, according to the President of the Scientific Council, Jean-François Delfraissy. The primary vaccination has stagnated at the same level for a few months, it is therefore in the recall campaign that the accelerator is put in order to stop the viral circulation.

Also listen Covid-19: Can France resist the fifth wave?

“Without an epidemic resumption, many countries would be much more cautious about this extension of the third dose”, underlines Jean-Daniel Lelièvre, head of the clinical immunology and infectious diseases department at Henri-Mondor hospital in Créteil. In the United States, the US drug agency on Friday gave the green light to an additional dose for all adults. In Europe, many countries, such as Germany, Greece and Italy, have also taken the plunge.

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Covid-19: why the expansion of the booster dose was imposed on the government