France has now entered another wave of the Covid virus, now the eighth, according to a leading health official, as the winter season looms.

Part of the French government’s vaccination strategic board, Brigitte Autran commented: “Yes, we are in this eighth wave.

“All the indicators are on the up,” she said.

According to the country’s Covid statistics published on Monday, the seven-day moving average of new daily cases has hit its highest level since 2nd August.

At the time of writing this figure stands at 45,631, Reuters news agency reports.

In addition, the number of overall hospitalisation figures in relation to Covid, totalling 15,166, coupled with the number of patients with the virus in intensive care units, 843, were at their highest since late August.

Once again, the government is emphasising that vaccination is the key way to protect the most vulnerable people.

“Among eligible people, less than 50% have received their second booster,” according to Professor Elisabeth Bouvet, head of the vaccination commission at France’s national health authority.

“We need to correct this since there is currently a new epidemic wave and the risk factors and vulnerability to Covid-19 still affect the same people,” she added.

Within the new vaccination campaign, which got underway on Monday, the over-60s, people in retirement homes, those with weak immune systems, carers and pregnant women are being urged to have an extra dose of vaccines adapted to the Omicron variant of the virus.

“What is really important is to protect the vulnerable. Not to vaccinate the general population who are not at risk – though they may of course become infected – but who will not develop serious forms of the disease,” Professor Bouvet added.

The number of Covid fatalities in France is more than 151,500, according to World Health Organisation figures.

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