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France starts third lockdown to curb new wave of covid-19

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São Paulo – France started, this Friday (19), a new lockdown in several regions of the country to prevent the advance of the covid-19 and the possible collapse in hospitals. With the fear of a third wave of the pandemic, mandatory quarantine was enacted in 16 departments in the country, including the Paris metropolitan region.

The lockdown will affect about 21 million people in France and will be in effect for at least four weeks. The government estimates that the period is necessary to contain the advanced transmission of the coronavirus, which mainly affects the north of the country.

The restrictions will not be as strict as the previous lockdown. Residents are prohibited from traveling to other regions of the country, but will be able to leave home to exercise outdoors during the day from a limit distance of ten kilometers. Non-essential trade will be closed in the affected regions, while schools and daycare centers will continue to function normally.

The Paris region is considered the epicenter of the epidemic in France, with an incidence rate of 446 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in seven days, which represents an increase of 23% in one week. French Health Minister Olivier Verán says that about 1,200 patients are admitted to intensive care units (ICUs) in the capital – more than the peak of the second wave in November.

London and the lockdown

The British organization Resolution Foundation is emphatic: the delay in the decree of a lockdown, at the end of last year, caused 27,000 deaths that could have been avoided in the United Kingdom. The statement is based on a study published yesterday (18) on the postponement of mandatory quarantine to the beginning of January this year.

The study shows that the lockdown should have been implemented in the country in December, when there was evidence of the rapid increase in cases. With the delay in the decision to confine the population, the measure had to be less flexible and lasting.

“Starting a blockade timidly and late has been a disaster, causing thousands of preventable deaths. In addition to the delay, this means that the restrictions have to be more severe and lasting than in other countries, aggravating the economic damage, ”Mike Brewer, chief economist at the Resolution Foundation, told the newspaper The Guardian.

On the other hand, the study shows the need for “emergency aid” to keep people at home and businesses alive. The document recalls the € 186 billion economic package aimed at minimizing the impacts of the pandemic, which contributed to “family income remaining stable in the country, despite the crisis, and to avoid the bankruptcy of companies”.

* With information from DW Brazil

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Economy

Argentine President contaminated by covid-19 and fulfills isolation

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São Paulo – The president of Argentina, Alberto Fernández, informed on social media that he tested positive for covid-19, after showing symptoms of the disease. He said he is in isolation and has warned people with whom he has had contact in the past 48 hours. And he also reported that he had 37.3ºC of fever, in addition to feeling a slight headache.

The announcement was made this Saturday (3), the day after Fernández turned 62. “For everyone’s information, I am physically well and, although I wanted to end my birthday without this news, I am also in a good mood,” said the president.

He received the first dose of the vaccine (Sputnik) in January. The second, the following month. “I’m fine, I don’t have any symptoms. Only this fever from yesterday that I reported ”, he declared to the newspaper Clarín. “It is a very complicated virus, and the demonstration is that I got infected, even though I was vaccinated with both doses and with extreme care,” he added.

Former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who received the second dose of the vaccine today, sent a message of support to “Daqui do Brasil I send good energy, hoping for its prompt recovery. May soon overcome this disease to continue caring for the Argentine people. Hugs, mate! ”He wrote.

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