France considers stricter lockdown as Covid-19 patients in intensive care nearly 5,000

France considers stricter lockdown as Covid-19 patients in intensive care nearly 5,000

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                Les autorités sanitaires françaises ont déclaré lundi que le nombre de patients en soins intensifs atteints de Covid-19 avait augmenté de 102 à 4 974, plus que le plus haut de 4 919 du deuxième verrouillage à la mi-novembre.

                                    <p>Cette semaine sera décisive pour la stratégie pilotée par le président Emmanuel Macron et son gouvernement qui soutiennent que chaque jour sans lock-out est un bonus pour la France, qu'ils considèrent comme épuisée après un an de restrictions.

New, stricter measures were introduced on March 20, covering around a third of the population, including the Paris region, but the government has ended full home orders with many shops still open and people allowed to meet. outdoors in small groups.

Pressure is now mounting to close schools and go further, with many doctors and epidemiologists warning the disease is out of control.

“If we come to a point where the risk is too great, we have always said that a foreclosure is the ultimate decision, the last resort,” MP from the ruling party Aurore Bergé told the public Senate channel on Monday.

She defended the strategy of trying to “strike a balance” between managing the health emergency while taking into account the psychological impact of lockdown measures, as well as the economic and social costs.

“We will examine the effectiveness of the containment measures in the coming days and we will take others if they are necessary,” Macron told the Journal du Dimanche on Sunday, adding: “For the moment, nothing has been decided. ”

The 43-year-old head of state has resisted pressure from his scientific advisers and his health minister to impose a national lockdown at the end of January and is under fire from political opponents a year before the elections.

The deployment of vaccines in France has also been hit by a chronic shortage of doses.

“Disaster medicine”

The daily figures for new infections and hospitalizations give a grim reading.

Over the past seven days, around 37,000 new cases have been reported on average each day, a quarter of the previous seven-day period, as bed shortages in hospitals in the worst-affected areas become acute.

In total, there are currently 28,000 people hospitalized with Covid-19 in France, slightly less than the peak of 32,000 hospitalizations in the first wave in March and April of last year, and 33,500 in the second wave, according to reports. official figures.

On Monday, public health officials reported that 4,974 people were in intensive care, lower than the first wave peak of 7,019 but higher than the second wave high of 4,903 seen in November.

“The outlook is worse than frightening,” Jean-Michel Constantin, head of anesthesia and intensive care at the Pitié-Salpêtrière hospital in south-eastern Paris, told RMC radio on Monday.

“We are already at the second wave and we are getting closer to the first… April is going to be terrible.

In Seine-Saint-Denis north of Paris, the poorest region in mainland France, cases are now over 700 per 100,000 inhabitants, or about one in 150 people is infected.

More than 40 doctors and emergency managers in the Paris region wrote their names in an open letter on Sunday warning that hospitals should soon start rationing access to intensive care beds and select patients deemed to have the best chance of survival. .

“We cannot remain silent without betraying the Hippocratic Oath we once took,” they wrote.

Macron has always made this a red line, saying he would never force medical staff to make such life and death choices.

“There is a feeling of anger to find yourself in a situation which will force you to do disaster medicine,” said Rémi Salomon, a senior official at the AP-HP public hospitals in Paris, on Sunday.

“In 10 days, 15 days or 3 weeks, we could be overwhelmed,” he told news channel BFMTV, pleading for a new lockdown, including for schools.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP and REUTERS)



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