Britain is often said to be two weeks behind France in the new Covid wave - so how bad are things in France? Lille, Grenoble, Lyon and Saint-Étienne have today switched to maximum alert, with two thirds of regions on ‘enhanced alert’. Things are at their most worrying in Paris, where hospitals have been given permission to cancel routine surgery. Neither the capital, nor the rest of the country, is overwhelmed - yet.
Covid cases are rising almost as fast as in Britain: some 20,000 new cases were declared yesterday, almost three times the number of confirmed cases in the first wave. The positivity rate (i.e., the rate of people testing positive) is 10 per cent. But hospital caseload is nowhere near what it once was.