The most important contribution that nearly all of us not directly on the front line treating the sick can do is STAY HOME. This is a very powerful weapon against the virus as it breaks its chain of transmission. The virus cannot travel alone and each of us is playing a role in ending this epidemic by quarantining ourselves according to the regulations. And Prince Albert is reported to remind us that though the elderly and those fragile with other illnesses are vulnerable, the young too are occasionally victim. So the young need to take care, stay home, don’t gather and play their role as part of the quarantine.
The Prince having tested positive for Covid-19, following a test administered at the Palace, was reported to have very mild symptoms. The virus is blind to rank so, as the Sovereign continues with his duties working unabated, the Prince is reported to be taking the same medicines and vitamins as anyone else having mild symptoms: paracetamol, Vitamin C with supplements including capsules of eucalyptus and taking his temperature regularly.
Our busy Sovereign’s work to care for the Principality continues uninterrupted. His medical advisors are always close at hand and the general message radiating is that Prince Albert’s health gives no reason for concern. We are encouraged by the Prince himself to have patience, confidence, courage, and community spirit.
Thankfully, it is reported Prince Albert’s closest, Princess Charlene and the twins are not thought to be at risk at all, and Prince Albert has taken the care to call his closest others who would have celebrated his birthday with him. And we learn from the reports that the Palace staff is reduced by half and have their temperature taken as they enter as a wise precaution. It would not surprise nevertheless if some in high levels of government were contaminated in the course of their duties prior to isolating themselves, similarly to Serge Telle.
The Conseil National
The Conseil National urged for a closer dialogue with the Government on detailed actions to deal with the pandemic and its social and economic impact, not to mention health. They noted that there was a large impact on the Principality’s finances and budget and called for immediate recognition of their consultative role under the Constitution. Stéphane Valeri and Guillaume Rose among others clamoured for more active collaboration with the Government.
They put forward a Resolution for National Unity in face of the crisis. Two of their proposals to close building sites and the enforcement of a strict quarantine have already been adopted.
The Conseil National proposed these other detailed measures among others with respect to Public Health:
- ensure all intensive care units in the hospital facilities in Monaco had enough beds and equipment to deal with the peak of the crisis and add space if necessary
- stock up with the most effective anti-viral medicines available globally
- make protective gear available to all police, fireman and care-workers in the front line so they could care for the needy
- assure plentiful supply of protective masks and hydroalcoholic gel for everyone and prevent price gouging. (Nice has recently found themselves short with Mayor seeking solutions).
- Pool the best medical expertise under an overall coordinator.
And there were a raft of Financial Proposals in line with and elaborating on what the Government has already done to protect workers, including SBM employees and Companies, and to promote telework:
- for the unemployed to receive target compensation of the average wage of about 2.200 euros a month;
- and for the more highly paid to receive 80% of their salary to a maximum of 4.5 times minimum wage (SMIC).
No Going to the Beach or Coastal Paths. No Gatherings.
In order to encourage people not to gather so as to prevent the virus circulating, beaches and coastal paths are now off-limits as are the parks and play areas – just as is the case in the Alpes Maritimes.
“Gatherings” are the enemy in this fight to win against the epidemic. Even marriages and funerals are on hold. And even visits to the cemetery of loved ones have to be restricted to the closest family and even then remembering the advice to keep at a distance from others.
Neighbouring the Principality – Curfews During the Night
Convincing the public, and in particular youths not to gather has been a struggle. And the motto “Stay at Home” needs repeating again and again. In Menton it is reported young people have been playing hide and seek with the Police among the coastal rocks. In Nice a drone is circulating to reenforce the message.
The restrictions are being tightened in this fight to prevent the virus circulating. There is now a curfew across the Côte d’Azur Department from 10pm to 5am with fines to enforce it of 135 euros or if first offenders are lucky, a 35 euro fine.
New Coronavirus Cases in Monaco
As could be expected there have been additional positive cases of Covid-19 recorded in Monaco, not restricted to Serge Telle and the Prince. The count is still light relative to the surrounding region with a total to-date of 23 positive cases – of which there was the good news of the recovery the original case from February 28 of the young British man resident on the Rock.
Coronavirus Cases in Provence-Alpes-Côte-d’Azur
It is reported that more than 1,000 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in the Provence-Alpes-Côte-d’Azur region. Thirteen people have died. Specifically 1,041 people have tested positive in the “Paca” region since February 28.
The reported figure breaks down as follows: Bouches-du-Rhône, with 572 cases. The Alpes-Maritimes (174), the Var (159), the Hautes-Alpes (35), the Vaucluse (32) and the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence (17) follow. 75 patients are still in intensive care.
France Looking Forward To Schools Reopening
All schools and universities are currently closed in France. But a return of students to class on May 4 is the hoped for scenario by Minister of Education Jean-Michel Blanquer. It remains dependent on the evolution of the epidemic so it is not an official announcement.
Could the school year be extended and the summer holidays shortened? The minister is reported to have indicated the goal is not to touch the holidays.
The Best Advice: help win this war against the virus: Stay at Home. Patience, confidence, courage, and community spirit.