Omicron has become the main coronavirus strain in France, where the number of new infections has topped 200,000.
The Public Health agency said in its latest weekly survey published Thursday that “62.4 percent of tests showed a profile compatible with the Omicron variant” at the start of the week compared to 15 percent the previous week.
The Omicron variant’s advance was expected because it is highly contagious and has become dominant in other European countries including Britain and Portugal.
The strain contributed to the current flare-up in cases, which surpassed 200,000 in the 24-hour period for the second day.
At the beginning of December there were fewer than 50,000 daily cases. In early November the daily data broke the 10,000 threshold for the first time since mid-September.
French hospitals are now caring for 18,321 Covid-19 patients. 1,922 new admissions between Wednesday and Thursday, with more than 3,500 people in intensive care.
Last Saturday, France has recorded more than 100,000 COVID-19 infections in a single day for the first time since the pandemic erupted.
Over the past weeks, angry protesters took to the streets across France protesting the new coronavirus health pass measure.
French authorities had earlier declared an intention to relieve Covid-19 restrictions by August 9, 2021, in France.
Health pass measures will mainly target those vaccinated or who have tested negative for Covid-19.
Targeted segment will have access to public venues, including long-distance transport, restaurants and cafés – even France’s famed outdoor terraces.
Hence, the protests came just two days before the new rules come into force.