France’s Minister of Health Olivier Veran said Monday that plans would be put underway to activate 70 new urgent medical care facilities nationwide to handle possible outbreaks of the coronavirus. 

The announcement came after an emergency session with Prime Minister Edouard Philippe and other government officials amid a surge in cases from the virus in neighboring Italy.

The facilities, known as SAMUs, are used for medical care alongside university hospital centers.

France was the first European country to report a case of coronavirus.

The country’s junior transport minister, Jean-Baptiste Djebbari told local TV channel BFM Business on Monday that

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