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The French executive ensures that it is putting all means in the face of the “peak” epidemic of Covid-19 in the West Indies, facing a “dramatic” health crisis, while it tightens the screws in metropolitan France. Ministers Sébastien Lecornu and Olivier Véran are expected in Martinique on Thursday.
The fourth wave of Covid-19 continues to progress in France, with 30,920 cases detected between Tuesday and Wednesday and 9,233 patients hospitalized Wednesday evening, including 1,745 in critical care services. First affected, the West Indies, which have record incidence rates, approaching 2,000 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.
Martinique and Guadeloupe are now completely reconfigured to try to slow down the arrival of patients at the hospital, where several dozen additional resuscitation beds are already open, sometimes installed even in operating theaters, as at the CHU de Guadeloupe in the coming days. .
The executive has entered “an emergency scenario” for these territories, in the words of Emmanuel Macron, and the government asserts the means deployed: equipment and reinforcements of 270 caregivers and 60 firefighters arrived from metropolitan France for both he is.
But he seems to be running behind an epidemic which very suddenly took off, fueled by the Delta variant, a relaxation of barrier gestures and low vaccination coverage.
Sébastien Lecornu and Olivier Véran traveling to Martinique
In Guadeloupe, with the epidemic “peak”, “the problem is that it is no longer even a problem of resources, it is that a large number of patients, all unvaccinated, present themselves at the same time in hospitals” , warned the Minister of Overseas Sébastien Lecornu who, after going to Guadeloupe, finds Thursday the Minister of Health Olivier Véran in Martinique. They will meet there caregivers from the CHU of Fort-de-France and visit the Lamentin vaccination center.
“We are already preparing the reinforcements for the reinforcements”, explained Sébastien Lecornu on France Inter, also launching “a serious appeal” to the West Indians to be vaccinated, the only “medium and long term” solution. The Ministry of Health observes “a tremor in the West Indies, Martinique and Guadeloupe: there were 18% more injections on Monday and Tuesday compared to last week”.
.@SebLecornu : “We come back to the technique of confinement: the saturation and the risk of congestion in the hospital are such that confinement remains the short-term emergency solution. I am overwhelmed by what I saw today . ” # le69Inter pic.twitter.com/Khe7R3sOlj
– France Inter (@franceinter) August 12, 2021
In Martinique, Serge Letchimy, the president of the Executive Council, called on the government to “take a further step by setting up a military field hospital annexed to the CHU”, like that “of about thirty places erected in eight days in Mulhouse “in 2020.
The situation is “dramatic” in the West Indies and “will only get worse”, added Professor Gilles Pialoux on France Inter, because there are in these islands “more obesity, diabetes, more elderly people”, and “only 30% of people over 70 years of age in Martinique”.
The confinements will also deal a new blow to the local economy, tourists being asked to return to the metropolis. The situation is also black in French Polynesia, which now has an incidence rate of more than 1,500 and where a curfew has entered into force. The islands of Tahiti and Moorea will be confined, only on Sundays for now. Twelve nurses will leave Sunday to reinforce Papeete.
A turn of the screw in metropolitan France
In metropolitan France, the situation, far from being as critical, is however closely monitored, with the launch of the White Plans, to strengthen the staff of hospitals on the Mediterranean rim, in Corsica and on the Atlantic coast.
It led the executive to give another turn of the screw, by announcing an extension of the health pass to shopping centers of more than 20,000 square meters in the departments where the incidence rate exceeds 200 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. The measure should affect more than a third of the 350 centers of this size, according to AFP calculations.
The end of free tests is also scheduled for mid-October, in order to achieve the objective of “vaccination of all French people” wanted by the Head of State, while it slows down after having was spiked by her televised address on July 12.
Government spokesman Gabriel Attal also welcomed the fact that ten million additional French people had received at least one dose of vaccine since the intervention of Emmanuel Macron on July 12. With 67.5% of first-time vaccines, France is doing better than Germany and the United States but less well than other European countries such as Spain.