Covid-19: the number of screening tests has collapsed by half in a month

Last week, just over two million samples were validated. This is the lowest number since mid-November 2021.

With the return of fine weather, the lull in laboratories and pharmacies continues. In one month, according to data from Drees, attached to the Ministry of Health, the number of Covid-19 screening tests has collapsed by half. Down by more than two million, it reached 2.02 million only from April 25 to May 1 inclusive. Its lowest level since mid-November 2021.

Of this total, half – 53% – was for antigenic tests, specifies the Drees. The decline could have been even more marked, for timing reasons: it is “mitigated by the fact that the holiday nature of Easter Monday April 18 had weighed on the number of tests carried out the previous week (unlike Labor Day, which fell on a Sunday, which had little effect on the number of tests validated this week)“.

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The decline in the request for samples is marked in all age groups, and more particularly among minors, where the decline reached 22% compared to the previous week. The number of antigen tests is also decreasing in all of these sections. Other indicators down, last week, the daily number of tests validated by a health professional never exceeded the 500,000 mark, for the first time since the beginning of March. And, on May 1, 69,000 samples were taken, the lowest number since… mid-October 2021.

All elements point to a gradual return to pre-Omicron levels. At the end of the year, this particularly contagious variant had caused the number of contaminations to jump, triggering a rush to laboratories and pharmacies. By January, more than 45.7 million tests had been recorded, a number three and a half times greater than that seen in April, for comparison. Enough to put the whole industry under pressure.

Recently, the government took note of the decline in the epidemic, while the daily number of cases has been falling continuously for several weeks. The current improvementshould allow us to adapt our rules and adapt our system in the weeks to comesaid executive spokesman Gabriel Attal on Wednesday. A few days earlier, in the Hautes-Pyrénées, Emmanuel Macron had opened the door to the reintegration of health professionals not vaccinated against Covid-19, suspended for several months. “Vis-à-vis the other caregivers who have been vaccinated, who have also made the effort, ethical, which has been carried by the medical orders, we cannot, while there are still cases, reintegrate all right now“, he justified himself.

SEE ALSO – The Covid-19 pandemic had caused between 13 and 17 million deaths by the end of 2021, according to the WHO

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