Covid: should restrictions be extended to less-impacted departments?

Published by Caroline J. · Photos by My B. · Published on 23 March 2021 at 14h28
As the government made “new massive curbing measures” in 16 departments, should restrictions be extended to less-impacted departments? This is what epidemiologist Arnaud Fontanet invited on BFMTV this March 23 thinks.

Faced with the strong increase in coronavirus in some territories, the government has decided to implement “new massive curbing measures” in 16 departments in France. Since March 20, Île-de-France departments, Hauts-de-France departments, and Alpes-Maritimes, Eure, and Seine-Maritime are subject to new restrictions such as the closure of some non-necessary stores, or the ban of trips between regions.

As other territories are likely to move to 24/7 lockdown as well, should restrictions be extended to less-impacted departments? The answer is yes, according to Arnaud Fontanet. Invited this March 23 on BFMTV, the epidemiologist explained “the Scientific Committee recommends, as an anticipation, to test these measures to see if they are effective. It will take about three weeks, if we realize they are not, to reinforce them, before intensive care units are overwhelmed”. He says, “these measures could be highly relevant in regions that are still today in a rather controlled situation but that – by 3 to 4 weeks […] – will end up in a critical situation”, before explaining: “if the governmental measures are complied with, it could work, or it would be not enough”.

This March 22 already, a member of the Scientific Committee talked about this lead. “The question is to be really raised: would not it be as useful (to instate curbing measures – Editor’s note) in regions that are in a growing dynamic?”, geriatrician Olivier Guérin asked on BFMTV. “We need strong signals when the epidemic dynamics are increasing”, he added on Europe 1, reminding the importance of the “stake of anticipation” amid this period of health crisis.

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