Europe, Latest on coronavirus outbreak

France records 47,000 new COVID-19 cases

Health authorities monitoring 8 possible cases of omicron variant

Shweta Desai   | 01.12.2021
France records 47,000 new COVID-19 cases Saint Cloud Hospital Center Des Quatre Villes ( Julien Mattia - Anadolu Agency )

PARIS 

France recorded an unprecedented 47,000 new COVID-19 cases over the last 24 hours, the country’s health minister said Tuesday. 

Olivier Veran told lawmakers at the National Assembly that the country’s health situation was worsening, noting that an average of 30,000 infections were being registered daily. He warned that if this figure is exceeded in the coming days, it will mark a higher number of infections in the fifth wave of the epidemic compared with the peak of the third wave during the spring.

In April, the number of daily cases was around 50,000.

Veran reiterated his appeal to the public to get vaccinated in order to limit the number of hospitalizations and deaths. Although the majority of adults are vaccinated -- 50,876,798 people or 75% of the population have received both doses -- an estimated 6 million remain unvaccinated. France has also announced that people aged 18-65 years old are eligible for booster shots from this week.

Meanwhile, health authorities are monitoring eight possible cases of the omicron variant from recent arrivals from southern African countries who tested positive for COVID-19 but were found negative for the mutations found in the other variants of concern. Their tests require confirmation by sequencing which can take several days, the health department noted.

As a precautionary measure, France has closed entry for arrivals from southern African countries from Nov. 26 to Dec .1.

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