‘3rd wave is not behind us,’ French govt warns, as country approaches sad milestone of 100,000 Covid deaths

The French government has warned that there is still more to be done in tackling Covid-19 and overcoming the country’s third wave of infections, as the nation approaches the solemn milestone of 100,000 pandemic deaths.

Speaking on Wednesday, government spokesman Gabriel Attal said President Emmanuel Macron had called on his cabinet to present a new “coherent strategy” and “provide more robust measures” in light of the crisis and the proliferation of the Brazilian Covid-19 variant.

Attal noted that while some of France’s existing Covid-fighting measures were beginning to have an impact, he warned that “the third wave is not behind us.” He added that “we still have very difficult days ahead of us in the hospital,” with peak hospitalization still not reached according to modelling. 

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The government spokesman also said that there would be a “moment of tribute and mourning for the Nation” in memory of the victims of Covid-19 as France’s death toll approaches 100,000.

On Tuesday, France registered 39,113 new infections while there were 5,952 patients in intensive care units – the figure is much higher than the peak struck during the second wave there in October. 

The presence of new virus variants is also a cause for concern in France, with the government deciding on Tuesday to stop all flights to and from Brazil as the Brazilian variant increasingly becomes a threat to the nation’s vaccine rollout. Not only is the variant more transmissible, but another mutation also means it can evade immunity provided by vaccination or previous infection with the original strain of the virus. 

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