France coronavirus death toll rises to 28,108 while Italy’s daily new cases fall

FILE PHOTO: People walk on the banks of the river Seine after France began a gradual end to a nationwide lockdown due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Paris, France

France

France reported 483 new coronavirus deaths on Sunday, bringing the total to 28,108, as the country eases out of a two-month lockdown.

The 483 fatalities figure compared with 96 fatalities on Saturday, and was the highest since April 23. But a health ministry spokeswoman said this took into account “additional data” provided by local health agencies.

“There is not a sudden rise in deaths,” she said.

The 483 figure includes 429 deaths in retirement homes.

The number of confirmed cases rose to 142,481 on Sunday from 142,291 on Saturday.

The health ministry said the number of people in hospitals fell to 19,361 from 19,432 on Saturday and the number of people in intensive care units dropped to 2,087 from 2,132 on Saturday.

Both numbers – key indicators for the French health system’s ability to cope with the epidemic – have been on a downtrend for four to five weeks and peaked at more than 32,000 and more than 7,000 respectively in early to mid-April.

Italy

The daily death toll from the COVID-19 epidemic in Italy fell to 145 on Sunday, the lowest since March 9, against 153 the day before, the Civil Protection Agency said, while the daily tally of new cases fell to a March-4 low of 675 from 875 on Saturday.

The total death toll since the outbreak came to light on Feb. 21 now stands at 31,908 the agency said, the third highest in the world after those of the United States and Britain.

The number of confirmed cases amounts to 225,435, the sixth highest global tally behind those of the United States, Spain, Britain, Russia and Brazil.

People registered as currently carrying the illness fell to 68,351 from 70,187 the day before.

There were 762 people in intensive care on Sunday, down from 775 on Saturday, maintaining a long-running decline. Of those originally infected, 125,176 were declared recovered against 122,810 a day earlier.

The agency said a total of 1.933 million people had been tested for the virus as of Sunday, against 1.900 million on Saturday, out of a population of around 60 million.

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