France Sees Further Rise in COVID-19 Intensive Care Patients

April 4, 2021 Updated: April 4, 2021

France reported on Saturday that 5,273 people were in intensive care units (ICU) for COVID-19, a rise of 19 from the previous day, as the country entered its third national lockdown.

For the next four weeks, schools and non-essential businesses across the country will remain shut.

The rise in ICU patients on Saturday followed a much bigger jump the day before—the highest in five months, at 145. President Emmanuel Macron has pledged more hospital beds to care for critically ill COVID-19 patients.

As the country enters its third national lockdown, France revised its 2021 deficit and debt forecasts.

France’s public deficit is expected to reach 9 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2021, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Sunday, up from a previous forecast of 8.5 percent.

The change follows a downward revision of France’s growth forecast from 6 percent to 5 percent for this year, taking into account the effect of new restrictions throughout April.

Le Maire, speaking on LCI TV, said France’s public debt was set to reach 118 percent of GDP this year, up from its latest forecast of 115 percent. In yet another estimate before that, Le Maire had said in December public debt could reach 122 percent of GDP.

Epoch Times staff contributed to this report