The “stable and controlled” Covid-19 epidemic

The Covid-19 epidemic in New Caledonia, which has killed 276 people since the beginning of September, is currently “stable and under control”, even if a rebound remains possible in the coming months, said on Friday an expert in epidemiological modeling . “We are in a stable, even decreasing situation in Nouméa and Greater Nouméa although there are clusters in the North, in Thio or Houaïlou, and on the island of Maré”, indicated Morgan Mangeas, director. of research in applied mathematics and epidemiology at the IRD (Research Institute for Development).

Long free from Covid-19, New Caledonia (270,000 inhabitants) was struck at the beginning of September by a violent epidemic, which put pressure on the territorial hospital and required the dispatch of some 300 personnel from the Metropolitan health reserve . The epidemic has been in decline for several weeks, even if the circulation of the virus remains active, with an incidence rate oscillating in recent days between 80 and 100 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.

Restrictions lifted

“This controlled situation must not lead to a relaxation, as we have been able to observe in other countries, otherwise we will have a rebound at the beginning of the year or a little later”, warned Morgan Mangeas, however. , not excluding then a new hospital congestion. Most restrictions have been lifted in the archipelago, with the exception of the closure of nightclubs, performance halls, and the ban on sports competitions and gatherings of more than 30 people.

The health pass is also required in many public places, including cinemas, bars and restaurants, international flights are reduced and all arrivals are subject to a septaine at home, accompanied by screening. Although several elected officials have recently requested its repeal, the vaccine obligation was voted unanimously in September in Congress (deliberative assembly), on the deadline of December 31, 2021.

Currently, 73% of inhabitants over 12 have received a complete vaccination schedule and the third dose was accessible to the entire eligible population from September 2, regardless of age. “The territory is ahead of everyone in this area,” observed Morgan Mangeas.

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