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On 1/9/2022 at 2:20 PM, Beantree said:

The system in France, where everyone has a medical insurance number and carries an ID card, means that the EXACT number of resident people who haven't been vaccinated is known. Further to that they know all the names and addresses! They published the numbers by age group this morning and surprisingly one of the largest percentages of unvaccinated people is the over 80's, so Bridgett is far from alone and the anti-vax demonstrations are getting bigger.

We have that system in the Netherlands as well, but here it’s the people in their teens and twenties that have a low vaccination rate.

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Speculation today in a topic that suggested very soon everyone will have had Omicron at least once. I can understand that possibility because, with over 300,000 testing positive every day, 2 million a week equates to the population in 7 months, so around the end of July. Of course some don't even know they have it so don't get tested and we may therefore see the whole population having been infected by Summer? Despite this massive infection rate the hospitalisations are only rising slowly and are now about 3x what they were in November, which is half of the levels in the first wave. Let's hope it stays under control.

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Perhaps even worse in France @Cat tails. Set a new record with over 400,000 positives in a 24 hour period and they said perhaps 1 in 20 has Covid. But they are saying the 5th wave has peaked? Despite hospitalisations still increasing? The health authority suggests that us in the relatively unaffected South could see a massive surge in cases that the hospitals here can't possibly cope with. So whilst it is steading in the North, we could see a severe 5th wave? 

February 2nd sees a slight relaxation in rules, so masks outside will no longer be compulsory. The vaccine passport takes full effect on Monday, which means the unvaccinated can't do much. But the restaurants have said that, whilst they will check the passports, they will not check identities (job for the police), so there will be people 'borrowing' someone else's passport.

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Announced on the news yesterday that they had uncovered a network operation between Lyon and Paris which had generated 62,000 fake vaccination passes and 5 people had been arrested. Now these things are being offered on the internet for €250 each, so that's a real money spinner. The Interior Minister said that they estimate there to be 300,000 fake passes in the Country. From the demo on the TV, if your phone pass is scanned it comes up with 'valid', so these are sophisticated fakes, not just a doctored paper copy.

In the meantime, whilst out walking the dog, we met our next door neighbours. "We've both tested positive for Covid" they said. Don't know whether they are vaccinated because originally they thought the whole scheme was a Drug Company money maker? They are both very high risk because of the number of daily contacts they have, so no surprise really. Seems Covid is a lot closer to us that we thought.

The figures here are still extremely high. People are now asking why we can't end restrictions, like they have in the UK?

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OH and I have both caught Covid. Probably when we celebrated my 60th at beginning of Feb in East End pub. Packed full of peeps and few masks to be seen. Hes on day 10  I'm day 4. Feel tired and snotty and asthma has worsened but not terrible. The brain fog is the worse thing. Tried to work from home and impossible to concentrate.  Excuse any typos. Strangely we think we have Omnicron but also have a few taste and smell issues.  Anyway stay safe everyone. Xxx

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The hospitalisations have been falling slowly for the last two weeks, as have the numbers in intensive care. The mortalities remain constant, so about 1000 per week. As a result it was announced yesterday that from the 14th March face masks will not be compulsory, only advisory. Also the vaccination passport requirements will be suspended, which means that the 20% unvaccinated will have their freedom of movement reinstated. What effect these relaxations will have is unknown, be we will continue to wear our masks etc. We went to Spain yesterday and coming back all they wanted to see was our ID, not our vaccination passes. Mind you, it was nearly lunch time.

Finally the side-effects of the Moderna 3rd jab have substantially worn off; cough, sore throat, foggy brain and fatigue. This is after 2 ½ months! Still not feeling 100% and perhaps never will? My brother and his partner were due to fly to Italy last week, but she tested positive the day before so couldn't fly. They had insurance cover for that eventuality, but it remains to be seen how long it takes to settle the claim.

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I have just come back from seeing my MIL this afternoon, in France, the first time in just over 2 years.  Well you can imagine that having alzheimers and extended isolation hasn't been good, but apart from that, she is in good spirits.  So, the process for getting into the care facility is to hand over your vaccination passport, give your contact details, and have a temp check.  Once in your resident's room you keep your mask on, and the care home has said it is going to continue this despite the change in regs, which is fair enough.  The worst bit is that visitors are no longer allowed to share in mid-afternoon refreshments!

We had to show our vaccination passports in a restaurant last night, but in Spain the night before there were no checks on anything, anywhere.  In fact I've only been asked for my vaccination passport once in Portugal in all this time of covid.

Beantree - just out of interest, when we passed into France from Spain yesterday we weren't stopped or asked for anything.  We were on the motorway which goes past Bayonne.  Although in one of the first service stations up from the border, there were an awful lot of customs officers checking lorries in the car park.

 

 

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As to be expected the figures are on the rise again. The reasons given were that the new Ba2 variant is 30% more transmissible than Omicron, people are not wearing masks anymore (we are) and the vaccines are becoming less effective with time.

But Covid news has fallen by the wayside somewhat, to be replaced by the war in Ukraine and the soaring prices of energy and foodstuffs (wheat and sunflower oil).

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10 days ago two of my friends and my brother got covid on the same day, different places, all in bed for several days, headaches, temperatures, feeling very fatigued and rough, its taken them all at least a week to recover and both my friends are runners, fit and healthy.  At the weekend I heard the immuno-suppressed brother of a friend died of covid.  All these people had been in close proximity with tens/hundreds of other people, socialising.  I know most of Europe has gone back to 'normal' in terms of behaviour, but we forget whats still going on at our peril, its quite scary when we know how transmissible the new variant is.  The only good news I have had is that so far my Mum has escaped getting it, even though my brother is living in the same house.

Is there a 4th vaccine in France Beantree?  As of today, in the UK its open to those over75, or with underlying serious illness, who have had their 3rd jab 6 months ago or more.  I don't think we have any plans here in Portugal.

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They have been talking about a 4th, but I don't think there are any firm plans Daphne? I won't be having it. Still haven't fully recovered from my Moderna 3rd, which was getting bad reports about side-effects before I had it. My brain still feels rather distant, my co-ordination is far from what it was, I still have a cough and I still get tired quickly. They are now questioning whether the obligation to wear a mask indoors has been lifted too quickly. Another problem is people have dropped the other social distancing and hand cleansing recommendations as well.

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