COVID-19 infections in France hit new peak after lockdown


PARIS (Reuters) – France recorded 3,776 new COVID-19 infections on Wednesday, marking another spike after the lockdown and bringing the total to 225,043, but President Emmanuel Macron has again ruled out imposing another national lockdown.

A man wearing a protective mask walks through the financial and business district of La Défense as France steps up mask wearing in public places as part of efforts to curb the resurgence of the coronavirus disease (COVID- 19) across the country, near Paris, France August 17, 2020. REUTERS / Gonzalo Fuentes

“All indicators are steadily increasing and transmission of the virus is increasing among all affected age groups, especially young adults,” the health ministry said in a statement.

He said the virus was particularly active in and around Paris and Marseille, the two largest cities in France.

Some medical experts worry about the impact of the wild and maskless celebrations of Paris St Germain fans on the Champs-Elysées avenue in central Paris after their football club reached the Champions League final Tuesday.

Paris city officials are also worried about large fan gatherings expected on Sunday, when Paris St Germain play the final either against Olympique Lyonnais, another French club, or against Bayern Munich in Germany.

Despite the surge in infections, Macron told Paris Match magazine in an interview that “local strategies” were preferable to another national lockdown, which he said would cause considerable “collateral damage”.

The seven-day moving average of the tally of cases, which smooths out daily reporting irregularities, is now 2,621, above the 2,500 threshold for the first time since April 19, when France enforced one of the lockdowns. more stringent in Europe.

The number of people hospitalized again fell from 17 to 4,806 and those in intensive care from 6 to 374, reflecting the preponderance of younger people among new cases who are more likely to be asymptomatic or not to become seriously ill.

Both figures have been on an unbroken downtrend since early April, but that trend has slowed down in the past two weeks.

The death toll rose from 17 to 30,468, after an increase of 22 on Tuesday and 19 on Monday.

Report by Benoit Van Overstraeten; Edited by Gareth Jones

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