Macron has turned France into the ‘laughing stock of Europe’ with ‘total vaccine failure’

Macron and France 'are failing' on vaccine rollout says Moutet

Debate is currently raging after the revelation that France was lagging far behind other countries in terms of administering the jab to its population, with figures suggesting just 5,000 had been inoculated as of yesterday. Nicolas Bay, the general secretary of the right-wing National Rally party led by Marine Le Pen, was in no doubt where the responsibility lay.

With this totally failed vaccination campaign, we are indeed the laughing stock of Europe

Nicolas Bay

He told “With this totally failed vaccination campaign, we are indeed the laughing stock of Europe.

“But make no mistake: health services and doctors are not to blame.”

He explained: “The issue lies in the political decision-makers and the French bureaucracy, which is the victim of an obese administration.

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“It is insufferable to have missed the start of the vaccination campaign. The set goals in the short term are also too low.

“The government of Emmanuel Macron and Jean Castex must be blamed.”

The supply and distribution of vaccines should have been anticipated weeks ago, Mr Bay insisted.

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He added: “It would also have been necessary to prioritise volunteers for vaccination and organise so that everyone could participate: public and private sectors, even the army for logistics.

“Perhaps it would also have been necessary to encourage the vaccination of the active population and continue to confine those at risk in order to help the economy get back on its feet.

“The exceptional situation deserved an exceptional response.

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“The French were waiting for it. They are once again disappointed.”

France has fallen behind neighbours such as the UK and Germany, and Mr Macron is now demanding the vaccination programme be speeded up.

Health Minister Olivier Veran told RTL radio on Tuesday the government was going to “accelerate and simplify our vaccination strategy”.

In total, 300 vaccination centres would be operational from next week, the minister said, despite having initially ruling out such centres.

The original plan had been for the first phase of the vaccine rollout, which began on December 27, to focus on nursing home residents and staff.

By the end of the first week, France had delivered just over 500 COVID-19 shots with the situation scarcely having improved since then.

Catherine Hill, an epidemiologist at the Gustave Roussy institute in Paris, said: “I’m sorry to see we’re so late and we haven’t been able to vaccinate the people most at risk.

“French bureaucracy is definitely at the root of this delay.”

Over the weekend, the first hospital staff began receiving the vaccine.

The government has now added paramedics and health workers to the first target group.

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