Has France just signed the end of decreasing Covid cases in the country for the end of the year? As the virus variant detected in the United-Kingdom is now spreading in France, including one case in Tours confirmed by the DGS – the Directorate-General for Health – there is a shadow as for the logical decrease – because of the health restrictions set up to far – in case toll. “Estimations shows that the increase of the virus spicule protein hanging to cells probably enables the virus to be more contagious” Garches Raymond-Poincaré hospital infectious disease specialist Doctor Benjamin Davido tells Franceinfo.
This new strain “likely prevents the contamination toll from decreasing” he adds. As to know if there will be other cases of this variant in France, “it is certain”, the infectious disease specialist says. “We are in a scenario that sounds like the one from this past February, when we had this sort of moral frontier with testing people back from specific areas, Asia, then Italy, and we saw it hanging overtime preventing us from controlling the spread of the virus” he adds. He goes on: “it’s a disease that is often silent, asymptomatic, and then we won’t be able to track an asymptomatic virus which genetic code is different”.
In the event of a large-scale spread, the mutation of the virus is likely to spark hospital tension. “We see that if the variant starts to become more dominant, we’d be very distraught to control the virus over time” Davido explains, adding that in England “they are considering speeding the vaccine spread campaign to take over the virus”.
What about France? Could the vaccination campaign be accelerated? The infectious disease specialist says it could: “It could enable to get an individual awareness about our sensitivity to the virus and our room for maneuver is limited. It is always one step ahead” he says. He continues: “Do we want the virus to take over including a risk on increasing hospitalizations and deaths, leading to a likely new lockdown, or do we want to accelerate the vaccine schedule so that we can hope and get over with the virus by the summer?”… The question has been raised.
As to know if the Covid variant can have an impact on the effectiveness of the virus, it is unlikely, Davido says: “I’m not particularly worried. But if we have one or several vaccines and we don’t vaccinate in France, we’ll never get this herd immunity” he explains. He concludes: “If we want that at the end of the day, vaccination is beneficial, we need to get enough French, and also throughout the world, people vaccinated so that the epidemic can stop. This is a true game and we shall be here from January 1st”.