Home Covid News and Updates France health minister: COVID vaccine pass would remain in effect until ICUs are ’emptied’

France health minister: COVID vaccine pass would remain in effect until ICUs are ’emptied’

by Pragati Singh

The vaccine pass in France will be in place until hospitals are able to operate normally without cancelling non-emergency treatments to make room for COVID patients in intensive care, according to Health Minister Olivier Veran.

The government claims that the vaccine pass helps to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and has encouraged more people to receive the COVID vaccine, reducing hospital pressure. Critics claim it violates civil liberties, and some have resorted to the streets to demonstrate.

“When we have emptied intensive care units, or at least … when there is no further cancellation of procedures and if no new variant in circulation, then the utility of the vaccine pass will be debatable,” the minister told BFM TV.

France was still a way off that point, with 3,700 COVID patients in intensive care, Veran said, suggesting that number would need to come down to around 1,000 before the vaccine pass rules could be removed.

“In August we were at 1,000-1,200 and our hospitals were functioning normally,” Veran continued. “It’s an indispensable condition.”

Since mid-January, people in France have had to show proof of vaccination to enter bars, restaurants, cinemas and other public places. Previously, there had also been the option of showing a negative COVID test or proof of recent infection.

Asked whether France would require a second booster shot, Veran said it would depend on whether there were further mutations of the virus.

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