Covid-19: Should Eris, the new variant of coronavirus raise fears of an increase in contamination this fall?

2023-08-10 14:22:00

The recent Bayonne celebrations have shown this: Covid-19 clusters and contaminations are not behind us. As Sud-Ouest reminds us, 1.3 million festayres took part in the ferias during the five days of the 2023 edition of the Holidays. They also shared a sometimes forgotten virus: the Covid.

A record attendance on which surfed a newcomer in the world of variants: Eris. According to the health authorities, this new strain, a sub-lineage of Omicron, is present in nearly 35% of the viruses sequenced on national territory.

“In all age groups and especially in adults, we are seeing an increase in visits, in small numbers, for suspected Covid-19 infection (+26% or +149 visits)”, assures Public Health France in its last information bulletin, on August 2.

Reduced surveillance, impact difficult to estimate

But difficult to know precisely the real impact of Eris. And for good reason. Santé Publique France has streamlined its surveillance system since the beginning of July you virus “in a favorable epidemic context, marked by very low viral circulation in mainland France and overseas.”

In fact, the Eris variant is more contagious. It is therefore more transmissible, warn specialists.

Among the most common symptoms referenced are: sore throat, runny nose, dry cough, headache, wet cough, stuffy nose, hoarse voice, sneezing, muscle aches and also the alteration of the smell.

A wave to fear at the start of the school year

A new wave of Covid is indeed to be feared at the start of the school year, this fall and winterexplains epidemiologist Antoine Flahault, director of the Institute of Global Health at the University of Geneva, to our colleagues from La Dépêche.

“As a precaution, the authorities will probably recommend the vaccination booster at least for people at high risk of serious forms, in particular immunocompromised people and the elderly, pregnant women as well and perhaps health and EHPAD personnel, because boosters also reduce the transmission of the virus without being able to completely block it.

And if Eris is talked about, others will follow, reminds the epidemiologist: “We will probably have to endure further onslaughts of Covid waves, and especially each time a new, more transmissible variant emerges, such as Eris today. And until we eliminate the virus from our communities , we will experience these resurgences of Covid.”

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