STRAIGHT AWAY. Covid-19: China restricts 17 million inhabitants of Shenzhen city

The Covid-19 pandemic is experiencing a new upswing in several countries. Some, such as the epidemiologist Antoine Flahault, even speak of a “new wave in Western Europe”. And China reports a spectacular number of new infections this Sunday.

17 million inhabitants confined to Shenzhen. Faced with the resurgence of contagion in the country, China decides to restrict 17 million inhabitants to Shenzhen city. There are 66 cases registered. She had already closed non-essential places and banned restaurants in recent days. Shenzhen is home to tech giants such as Huawei and Tencent.

Record contamination in China. China has 3,393 cases of Covid-19 this Sunday, according to official data. This is a record since the outbreak of the disease in late 2019. Because of this spike in cases in the country, authorities have closed schools in Shanghai and locked up several cities in the northeast, while more than ten provinces try to contain local outbreaks. The spike comes as cases spiral out of control in South China’s Hong Kong territory, where tens of thousands of cases are seen every day and hospitals overflow with patients.

China’s borders remain virtually closed as policymakers continue to enforce a zero-tolerance approach to the virus. China is responding to outbreaks with local lockdowns, mass screening and population control through tracking apps.

But the fatigue of this strict approach is increasingly heard. Several officials are calling for softer, targeted measures to contain the spread of the virus. Economists, for their part, warn that the drastic measures will hurt the country’s economy.

The Chinese city of Jilin is partially locked up. The large city of Jilin in northeast China is partially closed. Hundreds of neighborhoods have been closed as the country records a record number of daily cases. This shows that the variant “Omicron (…) is highly contagious, fast and difficult to detect in the early stages of transmission,” said Zhang Yan, city province health officer.

Stabilization of hospital admissions. After several weeks of decline, the number of hospitalizations of people with Covid-19 in France is stabilizing.

72,443 cases in 24 hours. The latest assessment in France reports 72,443 new infections in 24 hours, up from 53,678 a week earlier. This corresponds to an increase of 35%. In hospitals, 20,860 people are being cared for with Covid-19. A week earlier there were 22,196. In intensive care they are 1857 against 2075 a week earlier.

Monday relief. Despite the resumption of contagion, the schedule for easing restrictions has not changed. Monday it will no longer be mandatory to wear the mask indoors, with the exception of public transport and health institutions. The vaccination pass is suspended, except in health facilities and people with disabilities and in nursing homes. Health protocol is being removed in business and lightened in school. More details in our article.

A possible fourth dose for the over-80s and the immunocompromised. People over 80 will be eligible for a second booster dose on Monday, which in most cases corresponds to a fourth dose of the Covid-19 vaccine. This new injection, optional, is possible if the previous memory is more than three months old, Prime Minister Jean Castex explained in an interview with Parisian. This second booster dose is also possible for immunocompromised people from Monday.