More than 40% of French deaths from Covid-19 in the last 24 hours, or 53 deaths out of 127, came from Guadeloupe or Martinique.
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All volunteered, some were warned at the last minute. More than 400 health professionals, most of them young, flew Friday August 20 to the West Indies to lend a hand to Martinican and Guadeloupe hospitals, overwhelmed by the Covid-19. An Air France flight to Pointe-à-Pitre took off in the morning from Orly airport, while an another flight, operated by Corsair, left the same airport in the afternoon for Martinique.
Léa Vignon was to be “on vacation from today”. But, like hundreds of nurses, orderlies and doctors, she responded to the call launched on August 8 by the Minister of Health, Olivier Véran, to go as reinforcements to relieve the West Indian hospitals. “Yesterday at 5 pm, I was warned that I might be called and I received the email at 8 pm”, tells this 22-year-old nurse who usually works at the Compiègne hospital (Oise).
The Delta variant combined with limited vaccination coverage (20% of the population fully vaccinated against 60% nationally) has plunged the two West Indian departments into a critical situation. More than 40% of French deaths from Covid-19 in the last 24 hours, or 53 deaths out of 127, came from Guadeloupe or Martinique.
Faced with the magnitude of the wave, tons of medical equipment, including oxygen extractors allowing some patients to be treated at home rather than in hospital, are transported to the West Indies and medical evacuations operated to the ‘Hexagon. To relieve congestion in hospitals, some non-Covid patients are also transported to mainland France on regular flights: four from Pointe-à-Pitre and three from Fort-de-France since the start of the week, according to an Air spokesperson. France.
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