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About a hundred caregivers will travel to French Polynesia “at the end of the week” to help fight the Covid-19 epidemic. While the archipelago is experiencing a surge in cases of contamination, doctors had written to Emmanuel Macron to ask for “more reinforcements”.
France will send to Polynesia “a hundred caregivers by the end of the week”, announced Monday, August 30 (Tuesday in Paris) to AFP Cédric Bouet, director of the cabinet of the high commissioner in French Polynesia. Since several weeks, the archipelago experiences a rebound in the Covid-19 epidemic, killing 38 people in three days.
“Thirty to forty people from the health reserve will arrive on Wednesday evening and add to the 28 already present at the hospital,” said Cédric Bouet. “At the end of the week, we expect other reinforcements, doctors, nurses and nursing assistants, who are not part of the health reserve but of national solidarity. They will also strengthen other hospitals,” he said. .
Request for reinforcements from Emmanuel Macron
Three days earlier, the doctors had written to Emmanuel Macron to ask him for “more reinforcements”, quoting him: “Here is Polynesia, here is France, you will be protected.” Two photos accompanied their text. The first, taken on August 27, showed the Polynesian president visiting bedridden patients in the nave of the hospital center converted into a space for the sick. On the other, taken on July 24, the Head of State, in the same place, assured the caregivers of his support.
The aid granted so far is “incommensurate with the reality of the epidemic in Polynesia”, according to a doctor who wished to remain anonymous. The previous week, the director of the hospital, Claude Panero, had estimated the needs of “200 nurses and 200 nursing assistants” in addition to the teams in place.
Hospitals and clinics are always more saturated: 426 patients were hospitalized for Covid-19 on Monday, including 55 in intensive care. On the island of Raiatea, a marquee has been erected in the hospital garden to accommodate around twenty patients. Others are placed on oxygen at home, due to a lack of places in hospital structures.
The epidemic has so far killed 423 people in this overseas community.