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France records 231 coronavirus deaths in a day bringing total to 1,331

Medical workers wearing protective masks and suits are seen at the pulmonology unit at the hospital in Vannes where patients suffering from coronavirus are treated, France, March 20, 2020.
Medical workers wearing protective masks and suits are seen at the pulmonology unit at the hospital in Vannes where patients suffering from coronavirus are treated, France, March 20, 2020. © Stephane Mahe, REUTERS

French health authorities reported 231 new deaths from coronavirus on Wednesday, taking the total to 1,331.

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The rise in the number of deaths from coronavirus represents a daily increase in France of 21%, a slight slowing from the previous two days with the country now in its second week of lockdown.

This daily government tally only accounts for those dying in hospital but authorities said they would soon be able to compile data on deaths in retirement homes, which is likely to result in a big increase in registered fatalities.

During a press conference, health agency director Jerome Salomon added that the number of cases had risen to 25,233, a rise of about 13% in 24 hours.

Salomon said 2,827 people were in a serious condition, needing life support, up 12% compared to Tuesday and meaning that more than one third of France's 8,000 beds equipped with ventilation gear are occupied.

(REUTERS)

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