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France reports a major spike in coronavirus deaths as total rises to 372

The front of the Palais du Louvre in Paris on March 19, 2020 as a strict lockdown comes into in effect in France to stop the spread of COVID-19 caused by the novel coronavirus.
The front of the Palais du Louvre in Paris on March 19, 2020 as a strict lockdown comes into in effect in France to stop the spread of COVID-19 caused by the novel coronavirus. AFP - CHRISTOPHE ARCHAMBAULT

French health authorities revealed 108 new deaths from coronavirus on Thursday, taking the total to 372 or an increase of almost 41%, the toll rising sharply yet again as the country was in its third day of a lockdown aimed at containing the outbreak.

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During a press conference, health agency director Jerome Salomon added the number of cases had risen to 10,995, up from 9,134 on Tuesday, which is a rise of 20% in 24 hours.

Salomon said 1,122 people were in a serious condition, needing life support, up 20.5% compared to Wednesday.

It is estimated France has around 5,000 beds equipped with the necessary gear but these are unevenly spread around the country.

REUTERS

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