While Balagne, in Haute-Corse, reached an incidence rate of 1,066 cases per 100,000 inhabitants on Friday July 16, and a positivity rate of 10.2%, the active circulation of the Delta variant of SARS-CoV -2 mobilizes the public authorities of the island. The micro-region, which numbered around 45,000 inhabitants in July, has become the epicenter of the epidemic on the island, with more than half (264) of the 500 cases recorded in Haute-Corse. “The situation remains very worrying”, supports the prefect of Corsica, Pascal Lelarge, aware of leading a ” race against time “, at the heart of the tourist season on an island that welcomed 2.7 million summer visitors in 2019.
From July 14, in Balagne, the restrictive measures taken by the prefecture due to the emergence of clusters dampened hopes for a good season, while the World Tourism Organization estimates that 77% of holidaymakers place safety health at the center of their choice of destination. End of service at 11 p.m. for bars and restaurants and a gauge of six guests per table, limit of fifty people for family celebrations … The prefect of Haute-Corse, François Ravier, means by this decree “Prevent new clusters and manage contamination”.
“We did not hesitate to cancel the fire of July 14, because 15,000 to 20,000 people usually gather in the port and we did not want to play with people’s lives”, relates Didier Bicchieray, deputy (DVD) to the mayor of Calvi and bar manager, who nevertheless remains optimistic for a “Relaxation” in the coming days.
Speed up vaccination
“The curfew at 11 pm is excessive, ineffective, inconsistent, because it penalizes professionals”, denounces Jean-Michel de Marco, director of the Ile-Rousse-Balagne intercommunal tourist office. “There were no mass cancellations and the Corsican Executive Council has issued proposals for the modification of the prefectural decree, in particular by anticipating the establishment of the health pass”, adds Mr. De Marco, judging that the “Destination remains safe”.
Currently, the hospital system is not clogged and the state of health of the young population infected at the beginning of July has not worsened. In Balagne, additional measures to speed up vaccination will strengthen the existing protocol with vaccibus or the extension of the opening hours of vaccination centers: “62 positive cases were recorded on Saturday out of the 600 tested, we are continuing this strategy of testing and vaccination”, says Marie-Hélène Lecenne, director of the regional health agency (ARS).
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