Covid France: Southwest case numbers improving, says health minister
He said the Covid-19 situation is 'very favourable' across the whole country, including areas in Nouvelle-Aquitaine and Occitanie, which were said to be of concern last week
A café in Bordeaux, the largest city in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region in France. (Photo taken pre-Covid pandemic) Pic: kateafter / Shutterstock
The Covid-19 situation in France is looking “very favourable”, including in areas of the southwest where a marked increase in Covid-19 cases was reported last week, Health Minister Olivier Véran has said.
“The figures for the Covid epidemic are currently evolving very favourably,” Mr Véran said yesterday (June 9) while on a visit to Paris-based tennis tournament Roland-Garros.
“[We are seeing] a reduction in the number of infections, and we are almost at -40% from one day to the next, from one week to the next,” he said.
“We are at some 6,000 new cases each day now, and an incidence rate that is below 70 per 100,000 people, including in the regions in which we warned about last week – Nouvelle-Aquitaine and some departments in Occitanie.”
France is reporting an average of 6,487 Covid-19 cases each day. There are currently 2,326 people in intensive care units due to Covid-19, a 16% drop from last week.
Mr Véran added: “Here, once again, we have returned to a downward trend, which is obviously good news.
“We are reaching figures that we haven't seen since last summer. This means that we have gone through the whole year with more infections and hospitalised patients than we have today. We owe this to the vaccination campaign.”
Over 28 million people in France have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, the latest figures show (from June 7). Over 14 million people have been fully vaccinated.
France reached the third stage in its deconfinement process yesterday (June 9), with cafés, restaurants and bars opening their indoor areas and the national curfew being pushed back to 23:00, from 21:00.
President Emmanuel Macron welcomed the latest easing of restrictions, posting on Twitter, “We have really missed this life!”.
He added that people must continue to respect the health protocol and barrier gestures for the return to be sustainable.
Nous y sommes !— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) June 9, 2021
S'asseoir à la table d'un restaurant.
S'évader le temps d'un spectacle.
Vibrer à l'unisson dans des gradins.
Retourner à la salle ...
Cette vie nous avait tant manqué !
Pour que cette reprise soit durable, continuons à respecter protocoles et gestes barrières.
Gabriel Attal, the government’s spokesman, said that “we must remain vigilant”.
“We must not believe that an improvement means the end of the epidemic. Let's continue to be careful, let's continue to respect the barrier gestures, and wear our masks,” he said yesterday (June 9).
“This is also the best protection against false hopes and disappointments.”
French Prime Minister Jean Castex is currently self-isolating for a period of seven days after his wife tested positive for Covid-19. This is the third time in the past year that Mr Castex has been a contact case of someone with Covid-19.