Dear friends and colleagues,
Our region, sitting favorably as regards the COVID epidemic until the beginning of July, with very low incidence rates, has recently, like many other areas in southern France, had to tackle increased circulation of the virus, due probably to the combined effect of the delta variant, the influx of tourists into coastal resorts and the defection away from social distancing and barrier measures, particularly in the party scene.
More recently, since around 15 August, the situation seems to be improving with a steady decline in incidence rates, an effective virus reproduction number (R0) of less than 1 and average full vaccine uptake levels of over 70% across France (with New Aquitaine being one of the regions with the highest figures).
These encouraging signs, along with the Covid health passport, mandatory mask wearing and barrier measures, have rekindled our hopes of holding our congress under “normal” conditions, with just a few adjustments like using video conferencing for speakers unable to join us in person.
We are, nevertheless, only too aware that a sudden downturn in the health situation or new government restrictions may compel us to take more drastic decisions that may even go as far as postponing our event.
The response to our call for contributions, solicitations from our partners and the numbers already enrolled to attend are all highly motivating factors, strengthening our determination and pleasure to bring you all together in October to enjoy a scientific program and speakers of the highest quality.
Hoping to see you in Biarritz in October,
The ATHS Organization comittee.