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France returns to lockdown

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Mother in law's partner (French) refused to be vaccinated until Mrs U and siblings said, "no vaccination"? No visits to us, no xmas, etc.

Had second jab a few weeks ago. Madeye-Smiley
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rob@rar wrote:
That's right, and some of their lockdown measures were (and I think continue to be) well beyond what would be acceptable in the UK to the majority of the population.


There is obviously a continuum between shooting people who show symptoms and dumping them in a mass grave and doing nothing but clearly some countries have responded better

https://www.wsj.com/articles/which-countries-have-responded-best-to-covid-19-11609516800
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brianatab wrote:
That might be seen by some as a brutal way of dealing with the virus, but we don't know all the facts. China has had a no nonsense policy with the virus from the start. We will never know the full number of cases or deaths, either directly from the virus, or as a result of their lockdown policies. (We do know that food supply was a very serious problem for many).

As we have reduced cases in the population, and try to regain some sort of normality, the question of enforced quarantine as the only effective strategy left in some cases may well crop up in the Western world at some point.

How should we deal with somebody who has symptoms, tests positive, but refuses to quarantine and still goes to the pub, Nightclub, Football match, concerts etc.?

One idiot could easily create conditions for a local spike, and restrictions, and even cause deaths.
Yes, all reasonable comments, but I think when people point out that China has beaten/controlled Covid (often with an unstated 'why can't we') it's important to understand what they have done differently. My perception from this distance, which might be wildly wrong, is that, as you say, they had a 'no nonsense' policy with lockdown from the start. Lockdown meant lockdown. That video for me typifies what I think that policy looked like in reality in Chinese cities when they were locked down. I don't believe that would be acceptable to the majority of the UK population (apologies for the thread divergence as I know this is about France, but I suspect the same would be true there as well). So while we (the UK) have a pretty strict lockdown at the moment according to international comparisons, we still see this level of social contact through footfall in retail settings:

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@rob@rar, Remember that the first French lockdown was 1km/1hr so much stricter than the UK's free for all lockdown but obviously not as strict as China and not strict enough to stop the virus.

What France didn't do (and @weathercam mentioned this above) is lockdown strictly where the virus was circulating, which is what China has done. People have called for this from the start and only now is the govt considering this strategy with partial local lockdowns in the Alpes Maritimes and Dunkirk. Of course, as you point out, it is doubtful that even a local lockdown in France could have been strict enough to totally prevent virus circulation. We were promised more ICU beds, 12,000 they said. We reached 7,000 but it is now back to 5,500 hence the current struggle. We were promised test, trace, track but it never really happened. A lot of testing but not effective and the data hasn't been well used. No sequencing for variants so these went completely under the radar. The Covid app rollout was ineffective. The President undermining confidence in the vaccine programme because he didn't order any vaccines etc. etc. etc.

I don't know if the issue is the age and experience of people like Macron, Attal or Beaune, kids straight out of university who've never experienced the real world? But Macron is beginning to make Trump look competent and that is an achievement in itself. BoJo looks like a genius in comparison. Not great for a President who thinks he is "too intelligent to explain his thoughts to the people".


Last edited by You need to Login to know who's really who. on Thu 25-02-21 12:06; edited 1 time in total
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Quote:

BoJo looks like a genius in comparison

Steady..............
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davidof wrote:
BoJo looks like a genius in comparison.
I think the hard outcomes such as excess deaths, impact on other healthcare indicators, impact on GDP, etc, make that a bit of an unsupported comparison.

For France and for the UK the first wave of the pandemic was an incredibly tough challenge for government, starting from scratch (although there's a big debate around that) and with so many unknowns about the nature of the virus and the illness. But not so much for the second wave of infection. That was much more of an avoidable catastrophe, but for the UK (and France?) it's actually been worse than the first time around.
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rob@rar wrote:
davidof wrote:
BoJo looks like a genius in comparison.
I think the hard outcomes such as excess deaths, impact on other healthcare indicators, impact on GDP, etc, make that a bit of an unsupported comparison.


The problem with the UK is a lot more people are overweight to obese compared to France and that is an important comorbidity. No wonder there are more deaths.

Now that is an important public health issue in itself but has been 70 years in the making.
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In many ways the restrictions in France were stronger than the UK.

I don't think that a large proportion of the UK population would have accepted a curfew and limits to distance from home. You only have to remember the furore over the pubs closing at 10pm. rolling eyes

Personally, I would have preferred travel to be restricted to, say 5 miles from home without a reason. Too many people continued to travel hundreds of miles, which defeated the purpose of the lockdown in restricting spread. Even now, it is still happening.

We also gave far too much notice for the restrictions. (How many holidaymakers brought back the virus in the 3 days between quarantine being announced and applying?).

How many 10s of thousands left London with the new strain when tier 4 was announced (3 weeks too late!)? Personally, I think the train/coach Operators should have been banned from issuing any tickets with immediate effect. Anybody from outside who wanted to return home would most likely already have had a return ticket. They might have been on a fairly empty train rather than being packed like sardines and put at more risk. Anpr could have been used on Motorways to identify out of area vehicles. Might have been draconian, but why not issue a ticket to everybody not traveling in a homeward direction, and only cancel those that could provide good reason?
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Laughing when you say no nonsense, do you mean trying to cover the outbreak up from the start, arresting the first quack who worked out there was a new virus who was trying to warn people about it, telling its population it came from the "west" or denying WHO the data they had requested?
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davidof wrote:
The problem with the UK is a lot more people are overweight to obese compared to France and that is an important comorbidity. No wonder there are more deaths.

Now that is an important public health issue in itself but has been 70 years in the making.
Undoubtedly that's a factor, yet the USA, which is the most obese nation by far, has fewer deaths per capita than Belgium, Czechia, Slovenia, UK, Italy, and Portugal. There seem to be multiple factors at play in determining how badly impacted a country is by the pandemic, making comparisons less than straightforward.

What I think is probably more straightforward, is that the way out of this nightmare will be largely determined by a government's performance when deploying vaccines. On that measure, so far, the UK government has a pretty good record.
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brianatab wrote:
In many ways the restrictions in France were stronger than the UK.
Not according to the Covid Stringency Index. The Oxford COVID-19 Government Response Tracker (OxCGRT) systematically collects information on several different common policy responses that governments have taken to respond to the pandemic on 18 indicators such as school closures and travel restrictions. It now has data from more than 180 countries. Here's France and the UK:

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It's not only Obesity. The UK has a much denser population than most of Europe, with probably more multi-generation households (especially amongst some communities).

Simple Maths: The more people in the household, the more probable cases, resulting in higher rates of Hospitalisation and deaths per household.

The UK also has a serious vitamin D deficiency in it's population, especially in, but not confined to, BAME communities. Vitamin D is essential for the Immune system. Doctors have been trying to get people to take supplements for years, with little success.

Vitamin D costs approx £1.20 per person per month. It's a no-brainer. No need for the Health service to prescribe it.
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davidof wrote:
rob@rar wrote:
davidof wrote:
BoJo looks like a genius in comparison.
I think the hard outcomes such as excess deaths, impact on other healthcare indicators, impact on GDP, etc, make that a bit of an unsupported comparison.


The problem with the UK is a lot more people are overweight to obese compared to France and that is an important comorbidity. No wonder there are more deaths.

Now that is an important public health issue in itself but has been 70 years in the making.


Not sure the proportion differential is as large as you would like to think..........and "70 years in the making"?
I dont remember any fat people when I was young - this sounds a bit like your "everyone is night skiing in Scotland" factoid...........

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GreenDay wrote:

I dont remember any fat people when I was young - this sounds a bit like your "everyone is night skiing in Scotland" factoid...........


Given you've put that in quotes I hope there is a reference for that, or are you lying, again?
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davidof wrote:
Claude B wrote:
But when France is in lockdown I can't go further than 1km for 1 hour. Not in lockdown atm but 6 to 6 curfew.


None of this night skiing miles from home which we see in Scotland doing at the moment. A 6pm curfew certainly means you have to think about being back at home in time. Also more discipline about wearing masks than the English have shown.


Yep, I am lying about what you said..................... rolling eyes rolling eyes

eta - you asked above if I was "lying, again" - which is actually quite offensive.

I called you out on the Scotland quip at the time (assuming you had just made an error) and you decided to ignore it - If you are going to post unsubstantiated rubbish, at least have the decency to admit it when you are caught out rather than suggesting that I have lied about something.


Last edited by Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name: on Thu 25-02-21 14:04; edited 1 time in total
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@rob@rar, that stringency index is a bit misleading - a consequence of being based on the most stringent area. I suspect the high UK reading through last summer was based largely on Leicester, most places had similar* restrictions to France. And in December a lot of the country (including parts of London with high infection rates) had indoor hospitality open, much less stringent than France.

Right now though the UK is the more stringent with schools and non-food retail closed.

[*Might have been more relaxed here, we had indoor hospitality open and I am not sure France did, certainly didn't experience any when we were over in July].
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@j b, yes, the regional differences make comparisons more difficult. My point is that we can't say that restrictions in France have been significantly greater than restrictions in the UK. Undoubtedly there have been differences here and there, but not overall, IMO.
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Weathercam wrote:
Areas like SW France & Brittany etc were in the Green zone in France before the Summer Holidays, and likewise, I'm pretty sure the Hautes Alpes.

As for that Val D'Isere photo, it's very easy to create a busy shot like that using depth of field, akin to those images of Oxford Street and Brighton beach, I might try later when I go out and shoot a couple of examples.


If you have a look at the all the live cams of the ski areas on youtube - you will see plenty of evidence in real time of the number of folks on the slopes and you can then judge whether any distancing or wearing of masks is happening. You can also make an informed guess as to what happens when it gets dark and where the folks may have travelled from.
The number of lights on at night in the flats at la plagne went from 'few' to 'many' over the last few weeks.
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France, like Germany, has relatively low flu vaccination (<half of the elderly population, vs the UK is over 75%). It is therefore possible that one of the "problems" for the UK, is that we've been relatively good at people alive who'd otherwise be vulnerable to respiratory viruses, only to have them fall victim to a respiratory virus against which we had no protection at the time.

The long-run outcome of this will be interesting from a public health perspective - will it encourage EU countries to push vaccination harder? As of 2018, the last full EU report, France didn't even have a national flu vaccination strategy, nor was it able to provide data to the EU on vaccine usage. https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/sites/default/files/documents/seasonal-influenza-antiviral-use-2018.pdf and https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0399077X19310807#:~:text=Immunization%20coverage%20against%20influenza%20in,implemented%20to%20improve%20this%20situation.

I hope that the result is wider uptake and awareness of the benefits of vaccination - anyone over 50 having a COVID vaccine should also be having a flu vaccine. Combined, these would have a beneficial impact on avoidable deaths and healthcare load.
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France has been very stringent at times, but in the wrong ways. The evidence seems to be clear that indoor transmission is vastly more important than outdoors, but the rules at times seemed more aimed at preventing sunburn than Covid.

I can't remember who it was in the Swiss government, but they said something like: We can't ban skiing, it would be like banning going for a walk in the woods. With the 1km rule the French effectively did ban going for a walk in the woods. And here they are now with areas back above 500 cases / 100k and every shop is still open. What is the French word for bonkers?
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Weathercam wrote:
......As for that Val D'Isere photo, it's very easy to create a busy shot like that using depth of field, akin to those images of Oxford Street and Brighton beach, I might try later when I go out and shoot a couple of examples......


Voila









Teenage snow-shoe groups I've been ranting on about



And this lot were not wearing any masks Laughing


I was walking up the piste with some friends, really for the first time in the holidays and it was so busy, this is the mid-station at Aravet @ 2,000m so all had done a 600m climb.

Again zoomed in and out




But like I've already said it's the large family groups that are so prevalent, two or three families all in one big group etc and then the teenage groups of 20+
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Hopefully a sign of improvement for the French roll out. This appeared today for the local medical centre.

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Oooh I'm eligible as I've finally got my ss number through Eh oh!
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@Claude B, The cabinet is open till 19h30. You leave your details with reception and the doctor will call you
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@Alpinebear, cheers I'll call them
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@Weathercam, Spaced out on the slopes, but also quite happy to congregate in large groups around rest areas?

Then, presumably, there is the problem of everybody arriving back at the bottom within a very short time period and congregating in car parks (day trippers), or walking through town in large groups?

Presumably, they are all self catering, and have to shop somewhere. What are they like in the supermarkets?

It's the occasional times when they congregate in larger numbers that is the greatest risk. Can't see it being any different throughout France, so unlikely to be very helpful in reducing infections. France likely to be back in lockdown for some time.
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I don't think any of that looks very different from what you'd see in many UK holiday spots - though there would be fewer masks around.
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20 more departments under surveillance. Potentially similar further measures to Nice/Dunkirk from 6th March. Inc Lyon so I've going Saturday Laughing
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Slight deviation of topic. (Germany, not France)

Well known leaders publicly having the vaccine might help to encourage reluctant populations. Just been reading that Merkle has refused the AZ vaccine, on the grounds that she is not in the recommended age group. She is 66! rolling eyes rolling eyes

Could have set a good example, but playing politics with peoples lives in the EU vaccine debacle cover up??

At the same time, the Mayor of Berlin is pulling his hair out at the lack of uptake, threatening to put anybody who refuses it to the back of the queue. At least somebody is trying.

Hope nobody has any realistic dreams of getting to Northern Europe this summer.
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pam w wrote:
I don't think any of that looks very different from what you'd see in many UK holiday spots - though there would be fewer masks around.


From the previous page
Weathercam wrote:
.......If I compare this to what I've seen on the UK South Coast over the Summer and over Christmas it's off the scale, more like rule of 12+!.......


I live right on the busy town promenade, and I'm sad and am forever looking out of the windows looking at everyone and on the whole, bar a few communities, the Brits have kept to the rules.

Check out my Cam overlooking the prom this weekend when the weather is forecast to be good and I'll be surprised if you see any large groups at all!

But there again there are no restrictions in France to large groups, so theoretically there is not an issue Puzzled
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hold_my_biere wrote:
France has been very stringent at times, but in the wrong ways. The evidence seems to be clear that indoor transmission is vastly more important than outdoors, but the rules at times seemed more aimed at preventing sunburn than Covid.


That made me laugh. So true.
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“Paris city hall announced on Thursday that authorities in the French capital want to impose a three-week lockdown, describing the current 6pm curfew as a "half measure that has bad results" in stemming the rise in Covid-19 infections”

Will any of the other 20 departments under surveillance do the same ?
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pam w wrote:
I don't think any of that looks very different from what you'd see in many UK holiday spots - though there would be fewer masks around.


As something of a comparison (obviously I'm not in France) but relevant I feel.

Locally, Wimbledon area, not even a destination or specific activity but we collectively have nowhere else to go. It's much busier than first lockdown road traffic wise by a huge factor. Masks, queing outside shops and conformity not breeched and general behaviour good. But weekends the common and open spaces generally are as packed as when during a summer event, unprecedented this time of year. Everyone walking, cycling, running, skating etc with a big increase in running specifically very visible. No particular problems covid number wise in immediate locality giving an indication that external activity at reasonable distance isn't a significant driver of rates.

Some weekends there's small service food stalls on a closed road but family groups seem to be keeping distance from another, but it looks very much like the pictures from this thread and the Val one from Steve.

It's all pretty calm and with vax program going through. Speaking to others within quite a diverse grouping, I've heard nothing in opposition to vax either with people generally comfortable and welcoming of it.
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Alpinebear wrote:
Hopefully a sign of improvement for the French roll out. This appeared today for the local medical centre.



Rang up and although the sign doesn't say so it is just for those more vulnerable in the 50 - 64 age group. So not me.
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Thought it was strange that only your area was offering vaccinations to 50-64 year olds when in the rest of France it's only for those with medical conditions!
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I thought perhaps they were trying to get rid of some AZ that no one would have Laughing
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@Claude B, same here but he will keep my details if he has a cancellation!
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I stopped off in the super-market at 14:00 when it was lovely and quiet, and in there bumped into two people I know and @KenX, who have been in the valley a long-while, and one is a nurse in Briancon Hospital!

Now if you think I'm maybe too disparaging about the holiday hordes these two are on another scale, maybe it rubs off onto me?

Basically, the Nurse said that things are getting worse, a lot worse, initially she said it was loads of accidents toboggans being number one and then ski du fond, in her words from "people that just should not be here" and now three weeks in they're seeing cases of the new variant via people from Nice.

Very much echoing what I've been saying in that "why the feck must they have their bloody February holiday, why can't they just leave it for a year etc etc" and further rants about people in too large a groups and they both said that numbers of visitors even with the lifts closed are crazily high.

I think it also seems far worse this holiday period as the roads are so busy with them all driving around looking for something new to do rather than be up the mountain.

Unfortunately, and fairly obviously she thinks that there will be a huge spike in cases to come Sad
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@Alpinebear, cheers I spoke to the reception who didn't offer that.
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At the end of the day locals can't have it both ways. Back during the first lockdown a lot here were up in arms as some 2nd home owners managed to sneak in. Then they've been campaigning vigorously to open everything up. Understandable as most people's livelihoods depends on that. To then complain about outsiders is disingenuous. Yes it will definitely lead to an increase in cases. It's pretty busy here with visitors from all over.

One of the ski shops near me has closed early. He was in danger of taking too much money and endangering state subsidies which would have made him worse off.

Managed a coffee in my nearest bar this afternoon, first since October Shocked Closed obviously but the owner who I know was doing some jobs and invited me in.
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