The canton of Vaud took small restrictions on Friday in accordance with the measures of the Confederation. No closure of restaurants and bars as was the case in the Jura.
Unlike other French-speaking cantons, Vaud did not announce Friday much more restrictive measures than those announced by the Federal Council on Wednesday. No closure of restaurants and bars in sight and their opening is maintained until 23:00. Only three new “small” measures have been decided.
Overall, the Vaud government has therefore decided to follow the Confederation’s measures and also welcomes the health decisions taken by the Federal Council. “We note that these are coherent and largely join those which we had decided to take last week”, declared in front of the press in Lausanne Nuria Gorrite, president of the Council of State.
At most, the canton operates small restrictions in three areas. “Our decisions are not driven by fear, but by responsibility. We want to avoid a new semi-containment in the heart of autumn and winter, ”said Ms. Gorrite. She recalled in passing that the canton had released more than half a billion francs in additional spending since the start of the coronavirus crisis.
Concept of extended private event
Concretely, Vaud extends the concept of private event (10 people maximum): in addition to family and friends, it also concerns all events whose participants are known to the organizer, including in associations. “The aim is to prevent people from using their membership in an association to justify a meal or an aperitif for 50 people”, explained Ms. Gorrite.
Regarding public demonstrations, they are all imposed a mandatory protection, mask and tracing plan. At the federal level, only public events taking place outside require a protection plan but without masks or mandatory identification devices.
In public establishments, the obligation of systematic tracing is maintained, even if the wearing of a mask and the distances are respected. It is less flexible than at the federal level, since the Confederation only provides for identification if neither the distances nor the wearing of a mask can be respected.
Limit contacts for Halloween
The president of the government insisted on the fact that “everything was also in the hands of the population”. Maintaining freedoms of movement and recreation are the responsibility of each citizen respecting health rules, she said in substance.
As such, the chief of the cantonal staff, Denis Froidevaux, launched a solemn double appeal to the population. The first concerns the Halloween party this weekend: he recommends limiting contact and finding alternatives for this tradition.
The second concerns teleworking: it strongly encourages companies to promote work at home in order to participate in the 50% reduction in everyone’s contacts to bend the upward curve of the second wave of the pandemic.
Mr. Froidevaux also announced that displays were planned to indicate the outdoor areas at risk where the mask is essential in towns, villages and particular spaces.
Private clinics approached
Also present, the State Councilor in charge of health, Rebecca Ruiz, took stock of the health situation in the canton. To date, 43 people are in intensive care for 229 total hospitalizations. There are currently 226 positive cases in the Vaud EMS and 35 deaths since August 2.
Ms. Ruiz also said that “a step had been initiated” with private clinics to support the overload looming at the CHUV and regional hospitals. A meeting was held Friday morning on this subject to determine exactly the availability of clinics to accommodate Covid or non-Covid patients, especially from the CHUV initially.