PARIS (Reuters) – France’s death toll from coronavirus infections neared 19,000 on Friday, but most data provided additional evidence that the spread of the disease was slowing after a month-long national lockout, said officials.
At a press conference, Jerome Salomon, head of the public health authority, said that the number of people hospitalized had decreased for the third consecutive day and that the total number in intensive care units had decreased for the ninth consecutive day.
“Our collective efforts demonstrate their effectiveness. The foreclosure is starting to pay off, ”said Salomon.
The number of intensive care patients, at 6,027, was at its lowest level since April 1 and down more than 1,000 from its April 7 peak of 7,148. Before COVID-19 spreads , France had 5,000 hospital beds equipped with ventilation.
At 18,681, the number of deaths increased 4.2% in 24 hours, although the rate of increase slowed for the second consecutive day.
France has the fourth highest number of deaths in the world, behind the United States, Italy and Spain and ahead of Great Britain. These five countries account for almost three-quarters of the current global total of more than 149,000 deaths.
The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in France has barely increased (+ 0.4%) to 109,252. And in nursing homes, the increase in probable cases has slowed sharply – 4% against 36% Thursday – for reach 38,717.
This brought the total number of confirmed and possible cases to 147,969, up 1.3% from an increase of 9.4% on Thursday.
(Report by Benoit Van Overstraeten; Edition by Mark Heinrich)
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