Almost a week after the appearance of the new strain of Covid-19 in the United Kingdom, a first case was detected in France on Friday December 25. Health authorities said in a press release that this first case had been detected in Tours, in Indre-et-Loire. “He is a man of French nationality residing in England”, explains the Directorate General of Health (DGS) which adds that the individual arrived from London on December 19 before being taken care of at the CHU on the 21 and being tested positive.
Also according to the DGS, the infected person is asymptomatic, is currently isolated at home and “is doing well”. “The health authorities proceeded to contact-tracing of the health professionals who took care of the patient and to the search of his contact persons at risk, to proceed to their strict isolation”, continues the press release of the DGS, which indicates that “several positive samples that may suggest the VOC 202012/01 variant are being sequenced”.
Like other European countries, France had feared for several days the presence of the virus within its borders, despite the re-containment of London and part of England, as well as the suspension as a precaution of trans-links. Channel, then the introduction of compulsory tests to return to France.
In addition, a procedure has also been put in place for people returning from South Africa, “where another variant of SARS-CoV-2 is currently circulating actively,” recalls the ministry.
As a reminder, according to several studies presented in the United Kingdom, the new variant of the coronavirus is more contagious than the original strain. According to one of these studies posted online Thursday, this contagiousness is greater than “50% to 74%” and could have consequences on the number of deaths and hospitalizations linked to Covid-19 across the Channel. However, for the moment, there is no evidence that this variant results in more serious forms.