Mental health is deteriorating during lockdown, French minister says

French Health Minister Olivier Veran said on Thursday that the mental health of people in France was deteriorating during the second Covid-19 lockdown due to anxiety and uncertainty caused by the pandemic, news wires reported.

"The mental health of the French significantly deteriorated between late September and early November," he said at a press conference.

"A consequent increase in depressive syndromes" has been observed in recent weeks, "for all socio-demographic profiles", the minister added. "It seems to be particularly pronounced among people in financial difficulty, 18-24-year-olds and, those suffering from psychiatric disorders."

Veran confirmed comments made on Tuesday by Jerome Salomon, the country’s top public health official, who spoke of "a significant increase in depressive symptoms". There were signs, however, that the country's lockdown was working with the latest figures showing the number of Covid-19 patients in hospital having decreased for the third consecutive day, along with the number of patients in intensive care, Salomon reported.

On Thursday, France had 32,345 coronavirus hospitalisations of which 4,653 were in intensive care. On Wednesday, there were 32,842 in hospital of which 4,775 were in intensive care. Since the start of the pandemic, 2,086,288 people in France have been infected with the virus, making the country the fourth worst in the world for infections behind the United States, India and Brazil.

The death toll from Covid-19 in France now stands at 47,127. The country reported 21,150 new cases of the virus in the last 24 hours. France’s second Covid-19 lockdown, dubbed the reconfinement, will end on 1 December. President Emmanuel Macron has said the number of daily cases must fall below 5,000 before the government can start significantly easing its latest restrictions.



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