The Covid-19 epidemic seems to be receding everywhere in France, but less quickly in certain departments, such as in the South-West in particular.
Without a doubt, the overall situation is improving on the coronavirus front. The national incidence rate has fallen below the 100 new weekly Covid-19 cases per 100,000 inhabitants and hospital pressure is less and less strong in critical care services. Nevertheless, a region of France worries the health authorities and the executive. In Nouvelle-Aquitaine in particular, the only region where incidence rates are on the rise, “we are seeing sometimes significant increases in the circulation of the virus”, indicated Gabriel Attal on Wednesday, evoking “warning signs” in some territories.
Currently, no more metropolitan department exceeds the threshold of 150 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. Better still, about fifteen register a rate of less than 50 new cases (Aube, Nièvre, Creuse, Charentes, Cantal, Lozère, Aveyron, Ariège, Drôme, Var, Alpes-Maritimes and Corsica).
In the South-West, the epidemic is declining less than elsewhere
Over the past seven days, if the incidence rate has dropped globally everywhere or is at a fairly low level, it has started to rise again more or less sharply in Haute-Garonne, in Gers, Landes, Lot-et-Garonne, the Tarn, the Pyrénées-Orientales or the Pyrénées-Atlantiques.
In the latter department, the incidence rate is currently 103 cases per 100,000 inhabitants against 67 two weeks ago. A peak can be observed on May 31 with a rate of 127 cases, which has been declining since.
According to several infectious disease specialists, the virus having “circulated little” in this area of the country, a localized and punctual reactivation of the epidemic would not be surprising in New Aquitaine or Occitanie. “As we have been less affected, the young population (under 50) is less immune”, confirmed Wednesday the director of ARS Nouvelle-Aquitaine.
29 cases of “delta” variant in the Landes
In New Aquitaine, the Regional Health Agency also indicated that it had detected 29 new cases of the Indian variant, now called the “delta” variant, bringing to 31 the number of cases of this type in the same department. At the beginning of the week, after the discovery of an outbreak of four cases, the ARS had decided on generalized screening.
About twenty suspected cases have also been identified: these are people who were positive on the PCR test but whose sequencing failed to detect the mutation. Thursday, Public Health France counted more than a hundred cases of the so-called “Indian” variant, in addition to the Landes cases.