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France Sets A Grim Record, Clocks 200,000 New COVID Cases In 24 Hours

With 208,000 new cases of COVID in a day, France is looking at its highest single-day spike in the country since the pandemic began in 2020.

France

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As the Omicron variant continues to spread through nations across the world, France set a grim record on Wednesday by clocking more than 200,000 cases in the last 24 hours. The information was shared by Health Minister Olivier Véran in a parliamentary hearing on Wednesday, December 29. With 208,000 new cases in a day, France is looking at its highest single-day spike in the country since the pandemic began in 2020.

The disturbing surge in COVID cases has been witnessed in the country ever since Christmas. The Emmanuel Macron-led nation has been adding more than 100,000 cases daily since December 25. In fact, the previous day (December 28), France recorded 179,807 new infections in a span of 24 hours.

The country is looking at harder days ahead, experts believe. Olivier Véran has cautioned that "everything suggests" that by the beginning of 2022, the nation might be seeing as many as 250,000 cases a day. French Hospital Federation had also warned that the "most difficult weeks are yet to come." 

France introduces prohibitions, ramps up vaccine drive

In a bid to curb the spread of COVID, Prime minister Jean Castex on December 27 reduced the period between vaccine jabs to three months for a booster shot. All adults will now need a booster shot from January 15, 2022, seven months after being fully vaccinated. From January 30, all caregivers will have to receive a third dose. And additionally, the government has also approved COVID-19 jabs for children from 5-11 years old.

Along with this, several restrictions have been reintroduced to limit the number of people in public spaces. For instance, Castex has capped gatherings to 2,000 people indoors and 5,000 outdoors. Prohibitions are also being introduced on the consumption of food and drinks in all cinemas, theatres, sports facilities, and public transportation. 

Mulling over introducing a 'COVID pass' to replace the 'Health Pass' from 2022, the French Government could possibly limit access for those unvaccinated, regardless of an RT-PCR Test. The 'vaccine pass' would limit access to bars, restaurants and several other venues across the country. 

In Europe, France is not the only nation hitting records in COVID cases. Countries like Italy, Greece, Portugal, as well as the United Kingdom, are also recording new highs. 

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