French Health Minister Olivier Veran said on Sunday that the isolation period for fully vaccinated people who test positive for covid-19 would be reduced to seven days from 10 days.
French authorities followed other countries such as the United States, which this week reduced the isolation period to prevent disruption to industries due to staff shortages.
“This isolation can be lifted after five days in the event of a negative test. Those who are not vaccinated will have to isolate themselves for 10 days, with the possibility of getting out of isolation after seven days under the same conditions,” Veran told le Journal du Sunday was published on Sunday.
He also said that the new COVID-19 Omicron variant was too contagious to be stopped unless a “strict lock-in” was reintroduced. In his New Year’s speech, French President Emmanuel Macron said the next few weeks would be difficult, but he stopped introducing new restrictive measures to limit the virus.
“We will be vigilant throughout January,” Veran said, adding that the current Omicron-driven proliferation may be the last.
France became the sixth country in the world to report more than 10 million COVID-19 infections since the outbreak of the pandemic, according to official data released on Saturday.
French health authorities reported 219,126 new confirmed cases over a 24-hour period, the fourth day in a row that the country has registered more than 200,000 cases.