Lunchtime News Wednesday 15th December 2021


Italy tightens regulations - Italy is tightening regulations and introducing strict restrictions on arrivals from tomorrow Thursday 16th December. The move comes due to the current spread of the Omicron variant.

From this Thursday, December 16 to January 31, 2022, travellers entering Italy from France will be subject to new rules. For vaccinated travellers: presentation of a negative result of an antigen test of less than 24 hours or of a PCR test of less than 48 hours (self-tests are not accepted) will be required; and proof of a complete vaccination schedule with a vaccine recognized by the European Medicines Agency (Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Janssen; valid for 14 days after the last injection).

For unvaccinated travellers: presentation of a negative result of an antigen test of less than 24 hours or of a PCR test of less than 48 hours (self-tests are not accepted) will be required; and the need to respect a 5-day quarantine, at the address indicated on the traceability form; the isolation period can only be interrupted after 5 days and after a new negative test.

Exceptions are made for children under 6, border workers and emergencies. For further details go to

Health pass - Today December 15th marks a key new step in the vaccine booster campaign in France with the health pass of many French people over 65 becoming void in the absence of a 3rd booster jab against covid. As of today, Wednesday December 15, access to restaurants, cinemas and long-distance transport will no longer be possible for those over 65 whose last dose of vaccine dates back to before May 17th and who have not received the booster jab.

It should also be noted that some people under the age of 65 are also concerned and these are those who were vaccinated with the Janssen's one-dose vaccine before October 17th and are able to receive a booster dose one month after the first injection.

The inclusion of the booster dose in the health pass - if it is a third dose - will be immediate. If, on the other hand, it is a second dose, the new QR code is not delivered until seven days after the new injection.

Faced with the difficulty that many French people over 65 years of age have in finding a slot to receive their booster dose, Prime Minister Jean Castex had announced last week that seniors could receive the injection in a vaccination centre without an appointment. However according to French media 400,000 people are still at risk of having their health pass deactivated today. The next deadline is also set for 15th January for 18–64-year-olds. According to the latest data from the Ministry of Health, nearly 16 million people in France have received the booster jab.

Covid figures - 2,800 patients are currently in intensive care in France due to covid. 63,405 cases were reported on Tuesday 14th December this is the highest figure since April when 84,999 new cases had been registered.

Vaccination for children at risk - Today Wednesday 15th December, also sees the opening of the vaccination for children aged 5 to 11 who are considered to be "at risk" of developing severe forms of covid. This will then probably be generalized on a voluntary basis to all others in the coming days or weeks.

Covid incidence rate on the rise in the Alpes Maritimes - The covid incidence rate continues to rise in the Alpes Maritimes region as the latest figures from Public Health France show that it currently stands at 733 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, nearly reaching July's figure of 757 during the fourth wave. With a 40% increase in the last seven days the number is higher than the national average in France which currently stands at 505.

Corsica calls for additional medical staff - Meanwhile Corsica has called for a reinforcement of medical staff in the Islands hospitals after it reported that all intensive care beds are full and other medical interventions will have to be suspended from today until January 6th. The island has 630 cases per 100,000 inhabitants according to the latest health data, an increase in the incidence rate of 41% compared to last week. A total of 263 people have died since the beginning of the epidemic across the island of 340,000 i