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HEALTH

France daily coronavirus cases hit new post-lockdown high

France on Wednesday recorded new coronavirus cases at the fastest daily rate since May, official figures showed, as the country prepares for the return from summer holidays.

France daily coronavirus cases hit new post-lockdown high
The number of new coronavirus cases have surged in France in August, the main holiday month in France. Photo: AFP

Almost 3,800 Covid-19 infections were confirmed in the past 24 hours, the health ministry's DGS public health division said.

“All indicators continue to climb and transmission of the virus is intensifying,” the DGS said in a statement.

More than 3,000 new daily cases have been registered on just two days since May, on Saturday and Sunday last weekend.

Several departments in both the Île-de-France region around Paris and the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region around the Mediterranean port city of Marseille on Wednesday passed the “alert threshold” of 50 new daily cases per 100,000 inhabitants, the DGS said.

Paris and Marseilles were both placed on the highest level of alert last week.

Nationwide, more than 16,700 infections have been detected over the past week.

Meanwhile the number of people in intensive care because of the virus remains comparatively low at 374 and the death rate has not seen a spike.

Since the coronavirus emerged late last year, more than 225,000 people have been infected in France and almost 30,500 have died.

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HEALTH

French public urged to wear face masks again on public transport

With France in the middle of a new wave of Covid-19, the country's health minister has urged the public to once again wear face masks on public transport and in crowded spaces.

French public urged to wear face masks again on public transport

With cases on the rise again, French Health Minister Brigitte Bourguignon said she is “[asking] the French to put masks back on in transport” in an interview with RTL on Monday, 

For the time being, however, she stressed it was just advice, rather than an obligation, and masks have in fact been recommended on public transport since the legal requirement to wear them was lifted in May. 

However with France reporting over 50,000 daily cases of Covid-19 the government is clearly concerned by the current wave of the pandemic.

Bourguignon said that “we must protect ourselves and protect others,” adding that wearing a mask is “a civic gesture.”

She urged people to don their masks as soon as they see a crowded train or station.

READ MORE: Return of the health pass? How France plans to tackle new wave of Covid cases

In addition to public transport, Bourguignon is also asking the French to once again mask-up in “all crowded, enclosed areas.”

Currently, masks are only required in hospitals, health centres and places that have vulnerable residents such as nursing homes. They are recommended in crowded spaces where it is impossible to practice social distancing.

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