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World News

Poland's daily coronavirus cases hit record high

A doctor in protective suite stands outside a door to the hospital during coronavirus disease (COVID-19) emergency in Czestochowa, Poland, March 23, 2020. Grzegorz Skowronek/Agencja Gazeta via REUTERS/Files

WARSAW (Reuters) - Poland reported a record daily rise in coronavirus cases for the fourth consecutive day on Friday, with 4,739 new infections, the health ministry said as the country readies for a renewal of some restrictions.

Wearing masks outside will be compulsory across the whole of Poland from Oct. 10, when a tightening of restrictions in schools is expected to be announced. On Thursday Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki did not rule out introducing a state of emergency if cases continue to grow.

In total, the country of 38 million has reported 116,338 infections and 2,919 deaths in the pandemic. The biggest spike in new cases on Friday was reported in southeast Poland, where hospitals are running out of COVID-19 beds, according to local media reports.

The ministry said that as of Friday COVID-19 patients occupied 4,407 hospital beds all over the country and 320 ventilators, compared with 4,138 and 296 respectively a day earlier.

The ministry data also showed that while the number of new cases rose by 459 from Thursday, the number of tests fell by 22,600 to 21,500.

Reporting by Agnieszka Barteczko; editing by John Stonestreet and Emelia Sithole-Matarise

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