After announcing confinement is extended to May 11, the Head of State explained in his address on April 13, that the number of tests run every day will “increase again” before adding that France will be able to test “any person showing symptoms” from May 11. This Tuesday April 28, Prime Minister Edouard Philippe spoke to the National Assembly to present the government's deconfinement plan.
He gave details as for the testing policy that the government will implement and said that a 700,000 virologic-test per week goal from May 11 was set.
"At the end of confinement, we will be able to massively increase test. We have set a goal to run 700,000 virologic tests per week. Why 700,000? Because the Scientific Council tells us that at this stade, epidemiologic models plan between 1000 and 3,000 new cases every day starting from May 11. Because for each new case, between 20 to 25 people who met that person will be tested. 3000 cases times 25 people gives 525,000 tests a week. 700,000 tests give usthe margin we need, in addition to contamination chain test, to set up screening test campaigns like we've started in nursing homes for instance".
Practically speaking, symptomatic people will be tested first. In case the test is positive, all people who have been in contact with sick people will be tested, whether they are symptomatic or not. In each department, squads will have to identify contact cases and make sure tests are following up, ran and results avaialble.
The Prime Minister paired this statement with a new motto: Protecting, testing, isolating. "Isolation should be explained, agreed and accompanied, our policy relies on individual responsibility and awareness. Each one of us has duties towards others. We plan control plans if necessary, but our goal is to mainly rely on everyone's civic duty. We will leave the choice to the positive-tested person to be isolated at home, that will lead to the confinement of the entire home for 14 days for obvious reasons, or to be isolated in a place put at their disposal, such as requisitioned hotels".
These tests will be 100% taken in charge by the health care system.