Covid-19: what the bill on the vaccine pass contains



► Vaccination pass widely required

Article 1er provides that proof of vaccination status for Covid-19 will be required from people at least 12 years old, instead of the current health pass, to access leisure activities, restaurants and drinking establishments (at except collective catering), fairs, seminars and trade shows, and interregional public transport (planes, trains, coaches). In the case of transport, an exception is provided for: no need for a pass for “Overriding reason for family or health” – a dying loved one for example – subject to presenting a negative test, “Except in an emergency”.

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In addition, by decision of the prefects, access to department stores or shopping centers may be subject to the vaccination pass. Employees in the sectors concerned will be required, under certain conditions, to have such a pass. One “Proof of commitment to a vaccination schedule” may be sufficient time to receive the required doses.

Wednesday, December 29, the deputies, in committee, noted that a negative test will suffice for 12-17 year olds for school trips to places subordinate to the next vaccination pass. Organizers of political meetings will be able to require a health pass from participants. Consultation is underway on possible gauges.

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For other rooms and stadiums, public access rules may take into account the characteristics of these places, in particular their capacity, according to a government amendment which will be put to a vote on Monday. Large gatherings are currently limited to a uniform gauge of 2,000 indoors and 5,000 outdoors. To obtain the new vaccination pass, you will need a complete schedule (two doses or one, depending on the vaccine). From February 15, it will take its booster dose four months – and no longer seven – after its second dose for the pass to remain valid.

The government tabled an amendment on the ” repentance “ : people with false passes will not be penalized if they are injected with a first dose of vaccine within 30 days of committing the offense. A simple health pass (negative Covid test, complete vaccination certificate or recovery certificate) will remain valid for access to health establishments and medico-social services, except in emergencies, whether for the sick or their companions.

► Tighter fight against fraud

In addition to the police, the managers of places and activities subject to the pass will be able to check them, but under very supervised conditions. Thereby, “When there are serious reasons for believing that the document presented is not authentic or does not relate to the person presenting it”, an official identity document may be requested, according to a government amendment due on Monday.

The fact of presenting a pass belonging to another person and the fact of transmitting a pass to others with a view to its fraudulent use will be punished from the first breach of a fixed fine of € 1,000, against € 135 currently. The very possession of a false pass will be punished by five years’ imprisonment and a fine of € 75,000. The lack of control of the pass by the operator of an establishment open to the public will be punishable from the first breach of a fine of € 1,000, against a sanction from the third breach currently. In addition, the government is proposing to impose an administrative fine of up to € 1,000 per employee, up to a limit of € 50,000, for companies not playing the telecommuting game to fight the epidemic.

► Overseas

The bill programs the state of health emergency until March 31 in Reunion Island and Martinique. What if this exceptional regime, which allows for re-containment or curfew, was declared in another ultra-marine territory before the 1er March, it would automatically be extended until the end of March as well. In mainland France, it is a transitional regime called “Exit from the state of health emergency” which is already in force, until July 31, 2022. It is this regime, a sort of toolbox available to the government, which makes it possible to order restrictive measures (movement of people, demonstrations, access to establishments open to the public, etc.) whose passes.

In the event of a worsening of the epidemic and if there was a need for more serious measures, the state of health emergency should be re-initiated in metropolitan France. And if this regime were to be extended for more than four weeks, Parliament would have to allow it.

► Teleconsultations, health establishments

The 100% reimbursement of teleconsultations by Medicare is extended until July 31. The “funding guarantee for public and private health establishments” is extended until June 30.

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