PARIS, Nov. 14 (Xinhua) -- France confirmed 32,095 COVID-19 infections in the past 24 hours, pushing the total count to nearly 2 million, while hospitalization-related figures improved, figures released by health authorities showed on Saturday.
Since the country reported its first COVID-19 cases in mid-February, a total of 1,954,599 people have been infected, of whom 44,246 have died, up by 354 in one day.
Hospital admissions fell by 208 to 32,499, while the number of patients in intensive care units (ICUs) dropped by 32 to 4,872, reflecting an improvement in the coronavirus situation in France.
Despite some gains in the epidemic situation as a result of a night-time curfew and nationwide lockdown introduced last month, President Emmanuel Macron warned that "the coming days will be decisive."
"Our fight against the epidemic is collective... In class, office, at home, five life-saving gestures: wear a mask, wash your hands regularly, keep a distance of at least one meter apart, regularly ventilate closed spaces and download the TousAntiCovid app," he tweeted early Saturday.
As the world is struggling to contain the pandemic, countries including France, Germany, China, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States are racing to find a vaccine.
According to the website of the World Health Organization, as of Nov. 12, there were 212 COVID-19 candidate vaccines being developed worldwide, and 48 of them were in clinical trials.