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Philippe: “the first 15 days of April” more difficult

In this second containment weekend in France, more than three billion people entered a new containment weekend around the world on Saturday, faced with an acceleration of the coronavirus pandemic which has already killed more than 25,000 and is hitting hard. Europe, Italy at the head. The Prime Minister yesterday extended the confinement period by 15 days, setting the tentative end date for April 15. More than 600,000 cases of new coronavirus have been officially declared worldwide since the start of the pandemic.

On the peninsula, Covid-19 disease has killed nearly a thousand people in 24 hours, a daily toll unheard of for a single country since the start of the crisis. After Italy (9,134 deaths), Spain has the most deaths (more than 4,858, including 769 in the past 24 hours) in the world.

In France, the Minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation Frédérique Vidal, indicated that the tests for post-CPGE competitions and for teaching would be postponed and adjusted.

Internationally, the downturn is increasing. Russia completely closes its borders. Ireland imposes a total containment on its population from and until April 12 at least. The United States surpassed the 100,000 contaminated people mark on Friday. The day before, they had already passed Italy and China to become the country in the world with the most reported cases of infection with the new coronavirus.

In Portugal, all foreigners present in Portugal with a request for a right of residence under examination will be considered as permanent residents from Monday and at least until July 1 in order to guarantee them access to public services during the Coronavirus health crisis, Portuguese authorities announced on Saturday.

7:45 p.m .: Hospitals record 319 new deaths

France has recorded 319 new deaths in hospitals due to coronavirus in the past 24 hours, an increase of almost 16%, which brings the total to 2,314 deaths, announced Saturday Public Health France on its website. The number of registered contamination cases now stands at 37,575 (+4,611 cases), an increase of 14%. The number of people hospitalized reaches 17,620 including 4,273 serious cases in intensive care.

7 p.m .: France has ordered more than a billion masks

France has ordered “more than a billion” masks, in particular from China, to deal with the Covid-19 epidemic, Health Minister Olivier Véran said on Saturday. “A narrow and intensive air bridge between France and China has been set up in order to facilitate the entry of masks into our territory,” the minister said during a press conference, recalling that France needs 40 million masks per week.

6.45 pm: Hope to see the “first impacts” of confinement in “next weekend” (Institut Pasteur)

Authorities hope to see “the first impacts” of containment measures on the Covid-19 epidemic “by the end of next week,” said Dr Arnaud Fontanet, epidemiologist from the Institut Pasteur, member of the installed Scientific Council, on Saturday. by the government. “To be able to estimate the impact of these containment measures on the main indicator, which is the number of daily cases of admissions to intensive care, we will have to wait a bit,” he said at a conference. press with the Prime Minister. “We will not be able to see them and, we hope, only at the end of next week.”

6.30 pm: “no delay in making decisions on containment”, says Edouard Philippe

Prime Minister Edouard Philippe assured on Saturday that there had been “no delay in decision-making regarding confinement” to stem the circulation of the coronavirus, responding to criticisms notably on the maintenance of the first round of municipal elections . “At the time when we made this containment decision, there were less than 8,000 cases on the national territory and less than 200 deaths. Everyone will be able to appreciate the moments when the governments made this decision but I will not let anyone say that there was a delay in the decision on containment “, detailed the head of government during a press conference in Matignon.

6 pm: “the first 15 days of April will be even more difficult,” according to Edouard Philippe

Prime Minister Edouard Philippe warned on Saturday that “the first 15 days of April will be even more difficult than the 15 days that have just passed” in the coronavirus crisis in France, because “the fight has only just begun”.

“I want to tell you things with clarity and frankness: the fight is just beginning, the first 15 days of April will be even more difficult than the 15 days which have just passed”, declared Mr. Philippe during an information point for the French held with the Minister of Health Olivier Véran. The Prime Minister welcomed “a collective effort”, “first that of the carers, admirable, courageous, committed”, “but also the remarkable effort of those who, in the second line, ensure the continuity of life of the nation “.

5.18 p.m .: UEFA does not know when the football season will resume

UEFA, the governing body of football in Europe, does not know when to resume the season interrupted due to the Covid-19 epidemic and has prepared “a plan A, B or C” depending on the circumstances, a declared its president in an interview published Saturday.

“No one knows when the pandemic will end. We have a plan A, B or C: we are in contact with leagues, clubs, we have a working group. We have to wait like all the other sectors,” said Aleksander Ceferin in an interview with the Italian daily La Repubblica. Asked about the possible options for resuming the football season, Mr. Ceferin replied: “start again in mid-May, in June or even at the end of June. Then if we don't succeed, the season is probably lost”.

“There is even a proposal to end this season at the start of next season which would start a little later,” he added. But “not knowing when the pandemic will end, we cannot have a final plan”. After a day of crisis meetings last week, UEFA has decided to postpone the Euro to the summer of 2021 and suspend all club competitions “until further notice” in the face of the spread of coronavirus . The men's C1 and C3 were interrupted at the knockout stage, the women's C1 at the quarterfinals.

Referring to the request of certain clubs to reduce the salaries of their players in the face of the crisis, Mr. Ceferin simply stressed that “there is no room for selfishness” in this situation, ensuring that “many players agree”. “The crisis is also hitting clubs,” he said, “and nothing will be the same again after this terrible year,” he added. He spoke of possible modifications to the rules of financial fair play (FPF), which prohibits a club engaged in European competition from spending more than what it earns and closely regulates the capital injections from its owners.

4:20 p.m .: transfers of French and Italian patients to Germany are accelerating

he transfers by the German army of French and Italian patients seriously affected by the new coronavirus accelerated in Germany on Saturday.

The Charity Hospital in Berlin was to receive six French intensive care patients on Saturday. The sick were to be transported from Strasbourg by helicopter, announced the establishment and the town hall of Berlin.

Germany, which has more than 48,000 officially reported cases of Covid-19 and some 400 deaths, also welcomed six Italian patients on Saturday.

In recent weeks, French and Italian patients have already been treated by hospitals in border regions such as the Saar or Rhineland-Palatinate.

These Italians, in serious condition, were transported by a German military aircraft from Bergamo, a city in northern Italy particularly affected by the pandemic. They were hospitalized in hospitals in Cologne, Bochum and Bonn, according to a spokesman for the region of North Rhine-Westphalia.

On the French side, a first evacuation carried out by a military helicopter – two patients seriously affected by the coronavirus, transported from Metz to Germany – had already been conducted Saturday morning as part of Operation Resilience.

The two patients, embarked by staff in white coveralls, wearing masks and protective glasses, were transported to the hospital in Essen (west of Germany), according to concordant sources. According to François Braun, head of the emergency department of the regional hospital center (CHR) of Metz, interviewed by AFP, a new rotation to Germany of a military helicopter, with two other patients, will “probably” be carried out Sunday in early afternoon.

Other transfers of patients should be decided gradually, according to the evolution of the situation, said the doctor.

Since the start of the epidemic, “a dozen” of patients with Covid-19 disease have also been transported by ambulances to German hospitals, he said.

4 pm: new study by Pr. Raoult on a chloroquine derivative, deemed “effective”

The controversial Professor Raoult has published a new study on a chloroquine derivative, which he says confirms the “effectiveness” of this treatment against the coronavirus, but this assertion is disputed by many scientists.

This study, published online Friday evening but not yet in a scientific journal, covers 80 patients, 80% of whom have experienced a “favorable development”, according to the French scientist and his team. It succeeds a previous one which dealt with around twenty patients and had already been the subject of criticism on the methodology used.

“We confirm the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine (derivative of chloroquine, a drug against malaria, editor's note) associated with azithromycin (an antibiotic, editor's note) in the treatment of Covid-19”, write Didier Raoult and his team at the conclusion of the new study.

But many scientists argued on Saturday that it was impossible to draw this conclusion on the basis of this study alone, because of the way it is drawn up.

Their main criticism: the study does not include a control group (or control group, that is to say patients to whom the treatment studied is not administered), and it is therefore impossible to establish a comparison to determine if it is the treatment that is causing the improvement.

“No, it's not huge, I'm afraid of it,” tweeted Professor François Balloux, of University College London, in response to an enthusiastic tweet which described the conclusions of the report as “enormous”. 'study.

This is a study without a control group “which follows 80 patients with fairly mild symptoms. The majority of patients recover from Covid-19, with or without treatment with hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin”, he said. he developed, in unison with many other scientists on social networks.

“It's a safe bet that this new study convinces only the convinced,” said Heidi.news, Swiss online media specializing in science, delivering a critical analysis of the study.

Professor Raoult is at the center of a global debate on the use of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine to fight the coronavirus.

Some doctors, some countries and elected officials call for the widespread administration of hydroxychloroquine, described as “heavenly donation” by US President Donald Trump.

But a large part of the scientific community and health organizations are calling for a rigorous scientific validation, warning of the possible risks.

15h28: Portugal will treat immigrants in the process of regularization as residents

All foreigners present in Portugal with a request for a right of residence under examination will be considered as permanent residents from Monday and at least until July 1 in order to guarantee them access to public services during the health crisis caused by the coronavirus, the Portuguese authorities announced on Saturday.

These people, including asylum seekers, will only have to submit proof of the filing of their request to have access to the health system, social benefits, a bank account and employment and rental contracts. .

“People should not be deprived of their rights to health and public service just because their request has not yet been processed,” Interior Ministry spokesperson Claudia Veloso told Reuters. “In this exceptional period, the rights of immigrants must be guaranteed.”

3 p.m .: Russia closes its borders

Russia will completely close its borders from Monday to fight against the expansion of the new coronavirus, Russian authorities announced on Saturday.

According to a government decree, Russia “will temporarily restrict traffic” from all its road, rail and sea border crossings at the entrance and exit from Monday midnight

1.30 p.m .: the streets of Moscow deserted with the closure of shops

The streets of Moscow were unusually empty on Saturday with the entry into force of new restrictive measures to combat the spread of the new coronavirus, including the closure of all non-essential shops and restaurants.

The Russian capital did not order general confinement but this week tightened these measures: since Thursday, the elderly have been banned from leaving their homes and the closure of shops and restaurants took effect on Saturday.

Russian President Vladimir Putin also asked the Russians to stay home on Wednesday, declaring a week off.

On Saturday, the usually busy shopping streets in central Moscow were almost empty, crossed by rare passers-by, about half of whom wore masks.

“It's not scary to go out, it's even better when there are fewer people: we go for a leisurely stroll, no one bothers,” said a 60-year-old pensioner, Vladimir Leonov, who is expecting that this measure, scheduled to last a week, “be extended and even hardened”.

12:20 p.m .: Over 600,000 officially reported cases of Covid-19 worldwide

More than 600,000 cases of new coronavirus have been officially declared worldwide since the start of the pandemic, according to a count made by AFP from official sources on Saturday at 10.45 GMT.

At least 605,010 cases of infection, among which 27,982 deaths, were detected in 183 countries and territories, in particular in the United States (104,837 cases including 1,711 deaths), in Italy (86,498), the country hardest hit in number of deaths (9134), and in China (81,394 cases, including 3,295 dead), the initial focus of the contagion. The number of diagnosed cases, however, only reflects a fraction of the actual number of infections, with a large number of countries now testing only those cases requiring hospital care.

11:40 am: EU and USA deem it urgent to strengthen international cooperation

The chief diplomat of the European Union (EU) and his American counterpart discussed “the urgent need to strengthen international cooperation” to fight against the coronavirus pandemic, according to an EU press release published on Saturday.

In a telephone interview on Friday, Spaniard Josep Borrell (who speaks on behalf of the EU27) and American Mike Pompeo also agreed that humanitarian aid for medical aid to the most vulnerable countries should be rapidly increased vulnerable.

While several rich countries have unveiled colossal recovery plans, concerns are mounting for poor countries that do not have adequate health services.

At an extraordinary virtual G20 summit on Thursday, the twenty largest economic powers in the world called on international institutions, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to ” help emerging and developing countries cope with the health, economic and social shocks of the Covid-19 “.

“The EU and the United States have the capacity to contribute significantly to international efforts to deal with the pandemic,” the Union wrote in its press release.

During his interview with Mr. Pompeo, Mr. Borrell also stressed “the need to provide accurate and transparent information to the population as concerns increase over the fake news circulating on the coronavirus”.

10.45 am: Unprecedented support plan for the Japanese economy

Japan to develop unprecedented economic support plan to overcome impact of coronavirus pandemic, which will include direct payments to households and small businesses, announced Saturday Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

“We are going to present a support plan of unprecedented size that will exceed that developed after the Lehman crisis,” said Shinzo Abe, referring to the bankruptcy of the American bank Lehman Brothers which had caused the global financial crisis to explode in 2008.

The plan will include budgetary, monetary and fiscal provisions, he added during a press conference.

The government will draft over the next 10 days an amending finance law for the fiscal year starting in April to fund the plan, said Shinzo Abe.

10am: prepa, CAPES and aggregation classes competition postponed and adapted

This morning on France Inter, the Minister of Higher Education, Research and Innovation Frédérique Vidal announced on France Inter that the tests of the preparatory post-class competitions, as well as the teaching competitions (CAPES, aggregation) would be shifted to late May or early June, and that their shape would be redesigned. There will be “a discussion to be conducted on the form that these competitions will take” with the Minister of National Education and the representatives of the CPGE, said the Minister. Consultation will take place next week, and more precise answers must be provided in early April.

9:11 am: Protocol found between the food industry and the State

In France, a protocol has been found between actors in the agrifood sector and the State, allowing the reopening of certain early markets under strict conditions.

– This is a historic first: alone on the deserted square in front of Saint Peter's Basilica, Pope Francis presided over a prayer in the face of the “storm” of the pandemic, urging the “frightened and lost” world to review its priorities and to reconnect with faith.

9.10 am: The evacuation of patients from the Grand Est to New Aquitaine will be intensified this weekend

A diagonal from the medical transfer: the evacuation of patients from the Grand Est to New Aquitaine will accelerate this weekend, with the dispatch of forty new patients suffering from coronavirus, while Ile-de-France -France is close to saturation.

After ten days of national confinement which has just been extended until April 15, France continues to organize to try to relieve hospitals in the regions most affected by the epidemic.

“It will increase, the peak of the wave is scheduled for the end of next week,” says for example Dr. Michèle Granier, president of the medical commission of the hospital of Corbeil-Essonnes, in the Paris suburbs. Other experts expect a peak expected between April 5 and 15.

According to the latest official report on Friday evening, the epidemic killed 1,995 in hospitals alone, including nearly 300 in the past 24 hours, and led 3,787 patients to intensive care (+412).

9h: In the United States, a “portable” test would give results in 5 minutes

An American company said Friday it had created a “portable” device capable of notifying in five minutes if a person has coronavirus and in 13 minutes if the results are negative.

Abbot Laboratories said in a statement that the US federal drug agency (FDA) has given it permission to start producing these tests, which it will be able to provide to healthcare professionals as early as next week.

The tests will be carried out using a portable device, the size of a small toaster, equipped with molecular technology.

“The Covid-19 pandemic will be fought on multiple fronts, and a molecular cell phone capable of giving test results in minutes will help,” said company official Robert Ford.

Thanks to its reduced dimensions, the device can be used outside hospitals, said the manager.

However, this device did not receive the green light from the FDA. It has been approved for emergency use only by approved laboratories and health care providers, said Abbot Laboratories.

To date, more than three billion people are confined worldwide due to the coronavirus pandemic which has already killed more than 25,000 people.

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