French COVID-19 Cases Fall As AstraZeneca Inoculations Start


2021-02-06 20:35:05

French COVID-19 Cases Fall As AstraZeneca Inoculations Start

France has received a batch of a COVID-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca. (File)

Paris:

France on Saturday reported a fall in new COVID-19 infections and in the number of patients being treated in hospital, slightly easing pressure on the health system as the country rolled out shots with a third approved vaccine.

The country registered 20,586 new confirmed COVID-19 cases, down from 22,139 the previous day and marking the third straight daily fall.

Hospitals were treating 27,369 people for the disease, down 245 from the previous day in a fourth consecutive daily fall.

The number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care eased to 3,225, down 20 from the previous day, data showed.

The government has resisted calls from health experts to impose a new national lockdown but the level of new cases per day has remained relatively steady above 20,000.

The number of people in France who have received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine has reached 1.86 million, with 247,260 having also received their second dose, the health ministry said.

France has received a batch of a COVID-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca, with 273,600 doses delivered, the ministry said in an statement.

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The initial AstraZeneca shots are being reserved for health personnel under 65, with first injections taking place on Saturday.

A second batch of 304,800 doses will be delivered next week.

AstraZeneca is the third shot to be made available in France after Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna.

France is relying on the AstraZeneca shot to accelerate a vaccination campaign criticised for a slow start. However, it may obtain fewer deliveries than initially hoped after production setbacks sparked a row between the company and the European Union.

The ministry reported 191 new deaths linked to COVID-19, taking France’s cumulative death count in hospitals and nursing homes to 78,794.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)



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