The virus “don’t take a vacation”. The number of Covid-19 contaminations has rebounded in several European countries in recent weeks. This seventh wave particularly affects France, which holds the record for daily contamination in the European Union, according to Our World in Data (in English), but it also affects some of its neighbors such as Italy or Greece. Some manage to keep the epidemic under control, but it is rarely thanks to restrictive health measures.

Overview of the epidemic situation in some European countries.

In Portugal the wave is starting again

Portugal is one of the first European countries to experience a new wave of contamination linked to the sub-variants BA.4 and BA.5, in May. It is therefore also the first to have seen the epidemic wave diminish. But it quickly started to grow again: on July 8, the country recorded an average of 10,126 cases per day in the last seven days, or 995 cases per million inhabitants. Portugal also recorded 20 daily deaths from Covid-19 over the same period, or 2 per million population.

Despite this increase in contamination, the authorities lifted the restrictions on entry into the country on July 1: it is no longer necessary to present proof of vaccination. The mask is still mandatory in public transport and taxis, as well as in health facilities (hospitals, pharmacies, retirement homes).

Germany on a plateau

Germany is no exception to the trend, but its situation is stabilizing. After an initial phase of increased contamination in early June, the number of new positive cases across the Rhine stabilized on a plateau by the end of the month – the country recorded nearly 90,000 new cases daily in the past seven days. , or about 1,000 cases per million population. The number of daily deaths was 81 in the same period (0.97 per million inhabitants).

At the same time, the country has also lifted most of the restrictions on entry to the country. It is no longer necessary to show a vaccination certificate or a negative test. FFP2 masks are mandatory on public transport.

Spain spared from contamination

In terms of contamination, Spain is doing better: the country has not experienced a real wave since the winter of 2021-2022, despite a very slow recovery since the beginning of June. Authorities recorded 22,204 cases per day on average over seven days on July 8, or about 475 cases per million population. But the country recorded an average of 88 deaths per day over the same period (1.89 per million population).

Unlike many countries, Spain has maintained some of its restrictions on entering the territory: travelers coming from outside the Schengen area must provide proof of vaccination, a negative test or a certificate of recovery. On the other hand, the country has recently abandoned the obligation to wear the mask indoors, which had been maintained since May 2020. Today it is mandatory only in transport (excluding airplanes) and in health facilities.

Greece on the podium of the most affected European countries

Greece is the third country in the European Union most affected by Covid-19 in relation to the number of inhabitants, with a wave that has steadily increased since the beginning of June. Approximately 17,375 cases per day were reported on average in the past seven days on 9 July, which equates to 1,675 cases per million population. In the same period, the country recorded an average of 24 daily deaths, or 2.37 per million inhabitants.

However, like France, the country has not implemented additional health measures. The use of mandatory masks was lifted on June 1, with the exception of public transport, taxis and medical facilities.

In Italy, indicators worsening

Italy is one of the European countries most affected by this new wave. The number of contaminations has been steadily increasing since the beginning of June: on 9 July the authorities announced an average of 94,569 cases per day in the last seven days, or 1,566 cases per million inhabitants. The number of deaths is also increasing with an average of 82 deaths per day in the same period (1.36 per million inhabitants).

This deterioration in indicators went hand in hand with the lifting of the obligation to wear a mask indoors in June by the Ministry of Health. The latter continues to recommend it, and FFP2 remains mandatory in transport (excluding aircraft).

The UK is doing well

The UK is relatively less affected by its European neighbors by Covid-19. July 8 showed an average of 20,787 cases per day over the past seven days, or 304 cases per million population. The daily death toll averaged 67 over the past seven days on 6 July (0.98 per million population).

This relative good health is not due to any particular restrictions. The country dropped most of its measures, including wearing face masks in public places, in January.

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