New cases of coronavirus in France on the rise, hospitalizations resume their downward trend

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A view shows the deserted Pont des Arts bridge in Paris during a nationwide curfew, from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., due to restrictions against the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in France, on 15 December 2020. REUTERS / Gonzalo Fuentes

PARIS (Reuters) – The number of people admitted to hospital for COVID-19 in France resumed its decline on Tuesday, ending three consecutive days of increases as the country replaced a second national lockdown with a nighttime curfew .

Critical care patients – the most important measure of a healthcare system’s ability to cope with the pandemic – also declined from 25 to 2,881, resuming a continuous decline since November 17.

This figure is still within the target level of 2,500 to 3,000 that the government set itself to decide on the end of the lockdown put in place on October 30 and lifted on Tuesday.

But as the number of new daily infections has not fallen below the threshold of 5,000 – another official target – the government has opted for less relaxation of restrictive measures than initially planned.

Health officials have reported 11,532 new COVID-19 infections in the past 24 hours, up from 3,063 on Monday but largely stable from 11,533 on Sunday.

The number of cases usually drops on Monday because there are fewer tests done on Sunday.

The number of people who died in France from COVID-19 infections increased from 790 to 59,072, up from 371 on Monday. The cumulative number of cases in France now stands at 2,391,447, the fifth in the world.

Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Edited by Chris Reese, William Maclean

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