Coronavirus Variant Accounts for Up to 20% of Cases in Paris

PARIS (Reuters) —
Syringes containing a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine are seen at the Cent Quatre cultural center in Paris, France, Monday. (Reuters/Benoit Tessier/File Photo)

The highly contagious variant of the coronavirus first detected in Britain now accounts for up to 20% of infections in the wider Paris region, a leading hospital executive said on Tuesday.

“We have initial results in the Paris region and they are not good”, Remi Salomon, head of the medical committee of Paris hospitals group AP-HP told franceinfo radio. “We were at 6% to 7% on Jan 7, we reached 15% to 20% last week.”

Salomon said tighter curbs were needed to rein in the pandemic. Last week President Emmanuel Macron held off from imposing a third national lockdown, instead toughening COVID-19 border controls and reinforcing a nightly curfew.

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