The reintegration of caregivers not vaccinated against Covid-19 "is not topical", said the new Minister of Health François Braun on Tuesday during a hearing at the National Assembly, underlining the "very low proportion" of hospital workers suspended for this reason.

“The latest survey conducted among the ARS (regional health agencies), health and medico-social establishments shows a very low proportion of suspended agents, 0.53%”, or “a little less than 12,000 (people) all professions combined, with technical and administrative staff”, he indicated during a discussion on the bill “of monitoring and health security”.

"There is a risk-benefit ratio"

The government text marks the end of most health emergency measures against the Covid-19 epidemic after July 31.

MP Ugo Bernalicis (LFI) asked the minister if there were "plans to reinstate caregivers" after this deadline and Philippe Gosselin (LR) felt "that it would be time to make a kind of amnesty".

The reintegration of these caregivers has been the subject of a series of questions from several opposition groups.

But "it's not topical and it's not the subject of this text", replied François Braun, saying he was "not used to kicking in touch", even if he did “ten years of rugby”.

“There is a risk-benefit ratio”, he underlined: “the benefit of bringing back 0.53% of caregivers compared to the risk that they will infect more people, by not being vaccinated.

We are not out of this Covid pandemic.

Of course, as soon as the scientists tell us “there is no more risk” it will be put back on the table”.

“Not getting vaccinated means more sick people”

"I prefer to emphasize the responsibility and commitment of the vast majority of professionals who have been vaccinated", added this professional emergency doctor, because "not getting vaccinated means more patients (therefore) an additional overload of our health system.

Nevertheless, “the suspension of this obligation remains possible by decree, after consulting the scientific authorities of course, and if the epidemic situation allows it”, he recalled.

The new bill includes limited measures such as a possible border health pass or the continued collection of information on the results of screening tests and vaccines.

Oppositions headwind

The oppositions want to seize it to challenge the government's health policy more broadly.

The LR deputy for Manche Philippe Gosselin thus denounced "the absence of vaccination centers" in "our municipalities".

The rebellious again demanded air purifiers, especially in schools, or criticized the "bed closures" in the hospital, also denounced by the ecologist Sandra Regol.

At the RN, Julie Lechanteux demanded "proof" of the effectiveness of the health pass "during the past year" and launched that the "vaccine does not work" in the face of new variants.

François Braun replied that the health pass made it possible "to avoid 4,000 deaths and 32,000 hospitalizations" in the second half of 2021, according to a report by the Economic Analysis Council.

“I dare not imagine if we had not put this pass in place”, he hammered, when most of the health emergency measures stop at the end of July.

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