France: more than 60,000 dead from COVID-19

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The number of deaths caused by the coronavirus epidemic in France since March has crossed the 60,000 mark, the toll rising to 60,229 people, according to figures from Public Health France released on Friday.

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The health authorities have been worried for several days about a “worrying” resumption of the epidemic, on the eve of the end of the year holidays.

“We are really on an increase in the circulation of the virus, a resumption of the epidemic,” said Sophie Vaux, epidemiologist at Public Health France, during an online press briefing.

Friday, Public Health France reported 15,674 people declared positive over 24 hours, against 18,254 the day before.

But health authorities are worried about a new influx of patients following the holiday season, despite the imposition of a curfew and the authorities’ urgent call to limit family reunions.

France, which was already “at a worrying level in terms of new cases, hospital load”, is “on the eve of two particular weeks, which are weeks of leave, reunion, meetings”, said Friday Laëtitia Huiart, scientific director of the public health agency, during her press briefing.

French President Emmanuel Macron has tested positive for COVID-19. Assuring “to go well” in a video, despite some symptoms (fatigue, headaches, cough), he called on the French to be vigilant in the face of a virus which “starts again even stronger”.

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