Covid-19: Jean Castex announces a simplification of the health protocol at school



Three simple self-tests for contact cases at school, without the obligation of an antigenic test or PCR: to curb the mess, Jean Castex announced, Monday January 10, a relaxation of the health protocol put in place to deal with the epidemic of Covid in schools.

→ READ. Covid-19: the school about to “crack” under the weight of the health protocol

“Indeed, we see these queues, I am a father, I can see what is happening”, underlined the Prime Minister, in the newspaper of 20 hours on France 2, by defending “simplifying answers” as a strike looms on Thursday 13 January.

First evolution of the protocol which comes into force on Tuesday: parents will no longer have to pick up their child immediately after they have been declared a contact case, but at the end of the lessons. Then, whereas previously, each student identified as a contact case had to immediately submit to a PCR or antigen test, now a simple self-test, which will have to be repeated on D + 2 and D + 4, will have to be carried out. The head of government also clarified that a single sworn statement, certifying that the first self-test is negative, would suffice for a return in progress.

Free self-tests

The three self-tests will be free, thanks to a certificate issued by the school. But they will continue to be distributed only in pharmacies. Eleven million new kits are to be delivered within a week, the prime minister said.

While pharmacies and laboratories are overwhelmed with requests for nasopharyngeal samples (approximately 1.5 million each day), Jean Castex nevertheless refused to modify French doctrine by defending this policy of massive tests, the abandonment of which would amount to “break the thermometer”.

The Prime Minister’s televised intervention appeared as an attempt to calm the smoldering fire among teachers and parents of students, as much as a new setback for the Minister of National Education, Jean-Michel Blanquer, weakened since the beginning of the year. The previous protocol, announced only the day before the start of the school year on January 3 in the press, had been criticized for its complexity.

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