French mental health “deteriorates” amid lockdown, minister says

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                Le ministre français de la Santé, Olivier Véran, a déclaré jeudi que la santé mentale des personnes en France se détériorait lors du deuxième verrouillage de Covid-19 en raison de l'anxiété et de l'incertitude causées par la pandémie. 
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                                    <p>Le ministre français de la Santé a commencé sa conférence de presse hebdomadaire par une sombre évaluation de la façon dont le virus - et les deux verrouillages qui ont suivi - avaient nui au bien-être mental des gens.

“The mental health of the French deteriorated considerably between late September and early November,” he said.

“A significant increase in depressive syndromes” has been observed in recent weeks, “for all socio-demographic profiles”, continued the Minister. “It seems particularly pronounced among people in financial difficulty, 18-24 year olds and those suffering from psychiatric disorders. ”

Véran confirmed the comments made on Tuesday by Jérôme Salomon, the country’s top public health official, who spoke of “a significant increase in depressive symptoms”.

“The psychological impact of the pandemic, the lockout is real,” continued the Minister of Health, who also referred to a “significant increase in anxiety” in France “since the end of August”.

Véran acknowledged that “the constraints imposed” on the French by the lockout “were neither insignificant nor without consequences”. He stressed that the government had not “neglected this (psychological) dimension of the health crisis”.

Hospitalizations decrease for a third consecutive day

There were signs, however, that the country’s lockdown was working with the latest figures showing the number of Covid-19 patients in hospital declined for the third day in a row, as well as the number of intensive care patients, has reported Solomon.

Thursday, France had 32,345 hospitalizations for coronavirus including 4,653 in intensive care. As of Wednesday, there were 32,842 hospitalized including 4,775 in intensive care.

Since the start of the pandemic, 2,086,288 people in France have been infected with the virus, making the country the fourth worst in the world for infections behind the United States, India and Brazil.

The death toll from Covid-19 in France now stands at 47,127. The country has reported 21,150 new cases of the virus in the past 24 hours.

President Emmanuel Macron has said the number of daily cases must fall below 5,000 before the government can begin to significantly ease its latest restrictions.

The second lockdown of Covid-19 in France, nicknamed the reconfinement, will end on December 1. Macron will address the nation next week about the pandemic and the evolution of restrictions.

France will win its battle against the coronavirus but it is a fight that will take time, warned Véran.

“The virus is circulating less than before the lockdown. We must not give up on our efforts… The lockdown is not over, ”he added.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP and REUTERS)

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