France has biggest one-day jump in coronavirus cases since second lockdown in Novemberjessie tan
France saw the biggest one-day jump in coronavirus cases on Wednesday since its second lockdown in November and the government prepared to further tighten limits on people’s movement.
The health ministry reported 38,501 new infections, pushing the total during the pandemic to 4.15 million. The seven-day average of new cases rose to over 26,000 per day.
The week-on-week increase was just 4.6per cent, compared to week-on-week rises of 20 to 30per cent between mid-October and mid-November.
Earlier in the day, government spokesman Gabriel Attal said tougher restrictions will be imposed in some regions including Paris from this weekend to counter an accelerating spread of infections.
The government is set to detail new restrictions on Thursday. They could take the form of partial lockdowns such as the weekend lockdowns already imposed – on top of a nationwide nightly curfew – along parts of the Mediterranean Riviera and some areas of the north.
“We will take pragmatic and regionalised decisions,” President Emmanuel Macron told health workers during a hospital visit on Wednesday.
Despite the jump in new cases, the number of Covid-19 patients in intensive care units (ICU) fell slightly, the first decline in nearly two weeks, easing by 20 to 4,219, health ministry data showed.
The government tracks ICU numbers closely as they are the ultimate measure of France’s ability to deal with the crisis.
The Paris region, which had 1,177 people in ICU on Tuesday, is under heavy pressure and has had to evacuate patients to elsewhere in the country. The number of deaths in hospital rose by 247 to 91,437 on Wednesday.
In the second nationwide lockdown in November, the number of people in ICU peaked at 4,919, on Nov 16. During the first lockdown in March-April 2020, France had more than 5,000 people in ICU for 25 consecutive days, more than 6,000 for 17 consecutive days, and a peak of over 7,000 for nearly a week early in April 2020.