“There will be a new wave in the European region, unless we stay disciplined“. This is what the director of the World Health Organization (WHO) Europe, Hans Kluge, said on July 1, in reaction to the latest European figures.
According to the organization, cases of covid have indeed started to increase again last week in Europe after ten consecutive weeks of decline.
An increase clearly visible on the graph below, which represents the number of new cases of covid per million people in Europe, from March 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021.
More brews, fewer restrictions
Specifically, during the week of June 21-27, the number of cases increased by 10% in the Europe region, which has 53 territories.
At issue: a “increase in brewing, travel, gatherings and the easing of social restrictions“, details the WHO.
Read also: Covid: five questions on the European health pass
The Delta variant soon to dominate
An unfavorable development in which the Delta variant, more contagious than the other variants, certainly played a role. For the WHO, it should also become “dominant“by August in Europe.
And according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), it should even account for 90% of new cases of covid in the European Union by the end of August.
Still too few vaccinated
Another factor in question: the number of people completely vaccinated still too low in Europe. Especially since studies show that receiving a single dose of vaccine provides only limited protection against the Delta variant.
In August, the WHO European region, “will not be fully vaccinated (63% of people are still waiting for their first vaccine) … and will still be mostly free of restrictions, with increased travel and gatherings“, worries the WHO.
Euro football also involved?
The organization finally pointed the finger at Euro football and urged the host cities of the last matches to ensure better monitoring of spectator traffic, including before their arrival and after their departure from the stadium.
The gatherings linked to this sporting event could indeed play a role in the worsening of the situation in Europe.
Several hundred cases have also been detected in spectators of Euro matches, in particular Scots returning from London, Finns returning from Saint Petersburg or spectators in the Copenhagen stadium who turned out to be carriers of the Delta variant.
A decline that is stagnating in France
And in France ? The hour is still on the decline, with less than 1,800 cases detected per day on average. But this decline is becoming less and less strong and seems to be heading “towards stabilization“, observes engineer Guillaume Rozier, creator of the site CovidTracker and the tool Quick My Dose.
A stabilization to watch closely because it could evolve, as in Europe, to a further rise in the coming weeks.
On average, 1,778 cases are detected every day. It is relatively little, and on the decline. But in reality, the decline is less and less strong day by day. We are heading towards stabilization. pic.twitter.com/ovP8qOeItx
– GRZ (@GuillaumeRozier) June 30, 2021