[En continu] Lucerne’s Health Minister suggests ending quarantines

The essential

The back to school school is maintained on January 10 in Suisse romande.

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In France, the project from law transforming the pass sanitary a pass vaccinal has been adopted on first reading by assembly national.

our follow-up to Thursday.

■ The Lucerne Minister of Health proposes the end of quarantines

Lucerne Minister of Health Guido Graf proposes, in a post published on his personal blog, to end quarantines for people who test positive for covid. Worried about the absences they cause and their deleterious effects, especially in hospitals and businesses, he calls for harmonization between the cantons in this area. Referring to the suggestion of reducing them to 5 days, he suggests evaluating whether “their removal would no longer make sense”.

According to him, the time between contamination and the result of a test is already long enough to transmit the virus, and, since the Omicron variant would cause less severe cases, he believes that such a measure would be justifiable to achieve more quickly. to a situation of collective immunity, provided that it is taken in a transparent manner. He recognizes that it would have important consequences on health and safety services, and on the economy, but says he prefers “an end in dread to an endless dread”.

■ Soldiers deployed to British hospitals under pressure

Several hundred soldiers will be deployed to reinforce British hospitals and ambulance services, faced with a growing number of absences and an increase in hospitalizations due to Covid-19, authorities announced on Friday. According to the health service for England, NHS England, more than 39,000 absences of hospital staff, in isolation because infected with the coronavirus or contact case, were recorded on January 2, or 59% more in a week and triple compared to early December.

This includes more than 4,700 absences in London, which has been the epicenter of the new wave of contamination due to the Omicron variant. In the capital, 200 soldiers will be deployed as reinforcements, including 40 doctors and 160 auxiliary personnel who should be at work over the next three weeks to make up for the absence of medical personnel. Regarding ambulance services, also strained, they will be reinforced by 150 soldiers in the north-west of England, currently badly affected, and around thirty in part of the south.

Around 1,800 soldiers are already deployed across the United Kingdom, notably in support of the vaccination effort and ambulance services. According to the latest official figures released Thursday, nearly 18,000 people – 50% more in a week and a higher since February – were hospitalized with Covid-19.

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■ Dozens of Hong Kong politicians in quarantine

Several dozen senior Hong Kong officials were sent to a quarantine camp on Friday. This after rubbing shoulders with people infected with covid at a party that brought together a large part of the city’s political elite, according to the authorities. This affair embarrasses the government, which is pursuing a draconian policy of “zero covid” and has just toughened the rules of distancing.

Among the approximately 170 people who will have to spend three weeks in an austere government quarantine camp, as required by the rule for any contact case, are Home Affairs Minister Caspar Tsui, heads of police, immigration and of the anti-corruption agency, and 19 members of the Hong Kong Legislative Council. All participated Monday evening in the birthday party of a Chinese dignitary in a Spanish tapas bar in the district of Wan Chai.

Several of the officials concerned have issued a public apology. Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam said she was “very disappointed” by the affair. The quarantine of the 19 members of the Legislative Council comes as the body, responsible for passing laws in Hong Kong territory, is due to hold its inaugural session on Wednesday. The 90 seats in the Legislative Council, the “LegCo”, were renewed on December 19. Under new rules imposed by Beijing, only “patriotic” candidates were allowed to stand and only 20 of them were elected by universal suffrage, the rest having been appointed by committees acquired by the pro-Chinese authorities in the country. city.

■ Start of vaccination for 5-11 year olds on Saturday in the canton of Bern

Vaccination against covid will be open to 5-11 year olds from this Saturday in the canton of Bern. Three centers have been specially equipped, in Bern, Biel and Thun. 6,200 children are already registered and 3,000 slots can still be reserved.

In a common position statement, the Confederation’s covid task force and pediatricians spoke out on Tuesday in favor of the vaccination of this age group, in particular to allow schools to remain open.

In addition, the Biel schools will not organize serial tests during the next two weeks; the cantonal outbreak testing system will be maintained. The City explains that it lacks information to switch to a preventive system, which requires the participation of all students.

■ Army: a third of recruits will re-enter from a distance

Due to Covid-19, nearly a third of the 11,200 recruits will start their distance school on January 17. They will not physically enter the service until the end of the month, provided they present a negative PCR or antigen test.

This phased entry into service will also be applied to executives, a third of whom will begin preparatory courses at a distance, said the Swiss army on Friday. in a press release. In addition, all military personnel must present a negative PCR or antigen test before going to the scene. Recruits who test positive will have to stay at home and start distance learning, if their state of health allows it.

Distance training for recruits, involving approximately six hours of self-study and learning per day and four hours of sports training per week, will be counted as full days of service.

Other measures have been taken to limit contagion within the army. Among them, the compulsory weekly tests of civilian personnel and professional soldiers having contact with the troops, the wearing of FFP2 masks and the suspension of outings and holidays at least during the month of January.

■ More than ten million cases in Africa

The African continent has crossed the symbolic level of 10 million cases of Covid-19, according to a count made Thursday by AFP. A total of 10’006’799 cases of Covid-19 have been officially identified in Africa since the start of the pandemic, according to an AFP count from official reports on Thursday evening.

Also read:
In Africa, the covid pandemic is totally underestimated

■ The obligation to be vaccinated for millions of American employees before the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court of the United States examines Friday urgently the obligation to be vaccinated against Covid-19 that Joe Biden wants to impose as quickly as possible on millions of recalcitrant employees. After months of trying to convince the reluctant, the Democratic President announced in September that he wanted to make vaccination compulsory, especially in companies with more than 100 employees.

In the country of individual freedoms, this measure was immediately denounced by elected Republican officials, who see it as an abuse of power on the part of the federal state, and by a part of the economic world which considers it counterproductive. The implementing decrees, published in early November, set at the beginning of January the deadline for employees to receive their first dose or otherwise agree to undergo a weekly screening, under penalty of a fine for their employers.

■ Menstrual cycle lengthened by less than a day after a covid vaccine

Immediately after receiving a vaccine, a woman’s menstrual cycle, i.e. the period between the first day of two periods, is lengthened by less than a day on average, a non-serious effect which appears to be temporary. according to a new study published Thursday.

Also read:
The pandemic (also) influences menstrual cycles

The duration of the rules itself is not affected by the vaccination, according to this work carried out in the United States on nearly 4000 women. This study could in particular help reassure those who have noticed changes in their cycle after a vaccine injection. It will also make it possible to oppose clear and solid data – the first on the issue – to the fears and false claims that have circulated on social networks.

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