As the COVID-19 Omicron variant spreads across the world furiously, France has taken new measures to protect the citizens. With the new vaccination bill implemented, it will be necessary for professional athletes to have the COVID-19 vaccination if they wish to compete in France. The news comes from the French Sports Minister Roxana Maracineanu, she also emphasized that no one would be exempted from this.
Le pass vaccinal a été adopté. Dès que la loi sera promulguée, il deviendra obligatoire pour entrer dans les ERP déjà soumis au pass sanitaire (stade, théâtre ou salon) pour l’ensemble des spectateurs, des pratiquants, des professionnels français ou étrangers 1/2
— Roxana Maracineanu (@RoxaMaracineanu) January 16, 2022
France has been taking things seriously and is determined to fight the pandemic, French citizens are required to have a “Health Pass” if they wish to enter public areas like bars and restaurants, it is also mandatory for using long-distance public transport. Seemingly, as the law gets passed, the “Health Pass” will become the “Vaccination Pass” and will be required to enter hotels and stadiums, which makes it a must for athletes. This pass also stops the use of short-term testing, so with this pass, there would be no need to take tests constantly.
Maracineanu stated to the French Media,
To practice your profession or come for pleasure as part of a sports team you will have to have a valid vaccine.
That’s the case for both people who live in France and also for foreigners who come to our country for a holiday or a major sporting event. Athletes have a role to play in helping convince non-vaccinated people into the vaccine programme as soon as possible.
Getting a vaccine pass is easy as there are no hard rules to follow. Athletes just need to have two doses of vaccine or one (This depends on the vaccine like Jansen). In order for the Vaccine Pass to remain valid, a third booster dose will be required four months after the last dose, this will be implemented from February 15, 2022.
The French statistics are looking good, almost 98% of the French Athletes are vaccinated, still, there are ant-vaxxers in sports just as there are in society. This law is currently aimed at everyone as no one will be exempted from this.
The UCI guidelines seem to be delayed, for now, the reason behind that delay seems to be the Omicront variant. With no guidelines at hand, the sports teams would have no other choice than to just pick the athletes that are fully vaccinated.
Things are also looking busy as the French Sports Calendar to kickstart with the Grand Prix La Marseillaise on January 30. A lot of other events will follow like Tour de la Provence (From February 10-13). For March, the Paris-Nice is scheduled from March 6 to March 13.
Some professional riders that will be performing in the Tour de la Provence are Julian Alaphilippe, Nairo Quintana, and much more. We hope that the world situation gets better, with that being said, our eyes are set on a competitive year for sports ahead.
Featured Image Via Twitter/Roxana Maracineanu