Coronavirus live: Merkel plans new German law to force restrictions on states; Hong Kong suspends AZ order | World news

According to new modelling released Tuesday on the Pasteur Institute’s website, the British variant’s proliferation in France has put a clear damper on the prospect of getting back to life as we knew it pre-pandemic this autumn, the horizon some scientists had put forward only months ago.

The study’s authors conclude that since the British variant, known as B.1.1.7, is now dominant over other coronavirus strains in France, 90% of the country’s adult population would need to be vaccinated by summer’s end before French residents can dispense with social distancing measures without causing a new spike in cases.

That high level of inoculation among adults is a very tall order in notoriously vaccine-sceptic France, where recurrent delivery delays have further plagued the country’s initially sluggish vaccination rollout. Specialists tell France 24 that the 90-percent goal would be virtually impossible to meet.

“The main message of our work is that vaccinations will allow us to come out of the crisis, but we have to expect to live with certain constraints in the autumn,” Pascal Crépey, co-author of the study and a researcher in epidemiology and biostatistics at France’s EHESP School of Public Health in Rennes, told France 24.

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