Thursday, May 26, 2022

No Vaccine? No cafes, according to new French virus law

PARIS – France’s parliament on Sunday approved a law that would exclude uninsured people from all restaurants, playgrounds and other venues to protect hospitals amid a record number of infections driven by the highly contagious Omicron variant The central measure of government efforts.

The National Assembly adopted the law by a vote of 215–58. Centrist President Emmanuel Macron had hoped to move the bill swiftly, but it was briefly delayed due to resistance from lawmakers from both the right and left and hundreds of proposed amendments.

More than 91% of French adults have already been fully vaccinated, and some critics have questioned whether a “vaccine pass” would make much of a difference.

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Macron’s government is hoping the new pass will be enough to limit the number of patients filling strained hospitals across the country without resorting to a new lockdown. The new confinement measures will deal another blow to the economy – and may even tarnish Macron’s chances of being re-elected in the April 10 presidential election.

So far, a COVID-19 pass has been required in France to visit restaurants, movie theaters, museums and many sites across the country, but people without vaccination have been allowed if they recently tested negative or recently They only show proof of recovery.

The new law requires full vaccinations for such places, including tourist destinations, multiple trains and all domestic flights, and applies to everyone 16 years of age and older. Certain exceptions can be made for those who have recently recovered from COVID-19. The law also imposes strict fines for counterfeit passes and allows ID checks to avoid fraud.

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More than 76% of French ICU beds are occupied by patients with the virus, most of them not vaccinated, and around 200 people are dying from the virus every day. Like many countries, France is in the grip of the Omicron variant, recording more than 2,800 positive cases per 100,000 people in the past week.

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