Public health

Anti-covid measures extended until start of the school year

A person who has taken a self-test now will now be allowed to stay in a bar or restaurant using the CovidCheck system until 1am. Library picture: Romain Gamba/Maison Moderne

A person who has taken a self-test now will now be allowed to stay in a bar or restaurant using the CovidCheck system until 1am. Library picture: Romain Gamba/Maison Moderne

Some modifications--self-tests valid until 1am and CovidCheck in private homes--are foreseen in the new covid law adopted on Thursday morning. However, most measures will remain the same until the beginning of the school year, unless the epidemic situation changes significantly.

Self-tests valid until 1am and the CovidCheck system available for personal home visits: those are the two main changes in the new covid law, adopted Thursday morning in the Chamber of Deputies. The bill passed with the votes of all MPs, except those of the two dei Lénk MPs, who abstained, and ADR MPs, who voted against.

Unless there are serious changes in the epidemic situation, health measures should therefore remain broadly the same until the start of the new school year, applicable from Friday 16 July until Tuesday 14 September.

One change concerns self-tests: a self-test carried out on the spot allowed an unvaccinated person without a negative PCR test to enter an establishment under the CovidCheck regime. However, the sudden increase in the number of daily covid cases led the government to further regulate this condition, a "grey area" in terms of checks and therefore effectiveness.

From now on, a person who has performed a self-test will only be able to stay in an establishment until 1am. Originally, this limit was to be set at midnight, but in order to facilitate its implementation, it has been pushed back to the closing time of bars.

Customer responsibility

In establishments that close later, it will be the customer's responsibility to leave at 1am: the customer will be responsible for any checks, not the establishment's manager.

For private residences, the limit of 10 guests remains valid. However, private individuals will now be able to opt for the CovidCheck scheme to accommodate more guests--but only after authorisation from the director of health. And with the obligation to carry out checks at the entrance--and a fine of up to €6,000 in case of non-compliance.

There is also a reduction in the requirements for schools: pupils sitting in a classroom will no longer have to wear a mask, but it will still be compulsory to wear a mask when walking around the school building. Outside, masks are no longer required.