Debate. Should “comfort” PCR tests be paid for?

While the vaccination campaign is stagnating, the Academy of Medicine has recommended paying the PCR tests carried out for “personal convenience” with the aim of pushing the French who have not yet done so to be vaccinated.

Make tests paid to encourage people to get vaccinated

In order to encourage vaccination, the Academy of Medicine is considering charging for PCR tests to people who are tested for convenience, that is to say without being in contact and without showing symptoms of Covid-19. For example, to go on a trip abroad.

According to Patrick Berche, member of the Academy of Medicine, some people will systematically opt for the PCR test rather than the vaccine when they need to present a European health passport (ie the digital EU Covid certificate that proves the status vaccinated, tested or cured of Covid-19). Making the PCR test paying while the vaccine is free could, according to him, encourage the population to be vaccinated, which he believes to be the only way to avoid or reduce the fourth wave which may arrive in September.

Last April, government spokesman Gabriel Attal assured that it was not planned to go back on the free of these tests. Today, Olivier Véran the Minister of Health says he is ready to study the question. The file is however returned to the start of the school year, the idea being also to give time to all those who wish to be vaccinated to do so by then.

Note that these tests represent a significant cost for Social Security: around 30 euros for antigenic tests and 70 euros for PCR tests.

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A counterproductive measure?

France is not immune to a resurgence of contaminations linked to the Delta variant. PCR testing could then help curb the spread of the virus by causing positive people to self-isolate.

François Blanchecotte, president of the National Union of Biologists, fears that people who have not been vaccinated and who fear having been infected, choose not to be tested for lack of means. Moreover, he considers that the “comfort tests” are anecdotal.

Other countries charge for PCR tests

In Spain or Portugal, the average price of a PCR test exceeds 100 euros, and in Germany, it can cost up to 150 euros!

It should also be noted that from July 7 these Covid-19 detection tests will become chargeable for foreign tourists coming to France. They will be charged 49 euros for PCRs and 29 euros for antigens.

And would you be in favor of this measure?

For what reasons) ?

Would you be prepared to pay for a PCR test in order to obtain the compulsory health pass to travel or go to a concert?

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