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FRANCE - COVID-19

France surpasses 2,000 Covid patients in ICU for first time since May

A medical worker, wearing a protective mask and suit, works in a medicine unit at the Clinique de l'Estrée - ELSAN private hospital in Stains, France, 14 October 2020.
A medical worker, wearing a protective mask and suit, works in a medicine unit at the Clinique de l'Estrée - ELSAN private hospital in Stains, France, 14 October 2020. REUTERS - BENOIT TESSIER

The number of Covid-19 patients occupying intensive care beds in France has risen above 2,000, the highest level since the last days of the first epidemic wave of late winter and early spring.

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The total number of Covid patients in ICU climbed by 151 in 24 hours to reach a total of 2,099, according to daily reports on Monday. 

Another 146 people infected with the disease died in the previous 24 hours as the second wave of the Covid epidemic pressed upon France’s health care system. 

The number was the highest single-day tally since 12 May, and took France’s total official Covid mortality figure, compounding deaths in hospitals and in care homes, to 33,623.

Two hundred sixty-nine new patients entered ICU in 24 hours, reflecting a growing rate in admissions as new patients arrive faster than others are discharged.

The last time more than 2,000 Covid patients were reported in ICU was 17 May. The number of ICU patients during the first wave peaked at 7,148 on 8 April. 

In the latest 24-hour period, there were 1,424 new hospital admissions and a total of 11,661 patients in hospital, the highest number since 10 June. 

The total of 13,243 new confirmed cases was lower than the weekly average owing to reduced reporting over the weekend. On average, nearly 24,000 new cases have been reported per day over the past week, up from around 17,000 the previous week. 

Daily figures from public health agency Santé publique France showed an average infection rate of 13.4 percent on Monday, as well as 7,978 hospital admissions including 1,441 in ICU over the past week.
Daily figures from public health agency Santé publique France showed an average infection rate of 13.4 percent on Monday, as well as 7,978 hospital admissions including 1,441 in ICU over the past week. © Santé publique France

The average infection rate or positivity rate, that measures the proportion of tests yielding positive results, was 13.4 percent, a rate that has grown steadily since July. 

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