Paris (hooly News) – France proceeded on Thursday to a first unprecedented evacuation of patients with Covid-19 aboard a medicalized TGV to relieve saturated resuscitation in the face of the rapid aggravation of the epidemic, which has caused more 1,300 dead in the country.
The day after President Emmanuel Macron’s displacement in the Grand Est region, which was particularly struck, and the visit to the military hospital installed in Mulhouse, twenty Alsatian patients were boarded on Thursday morning on the train which must evacuate them to hospitals in the countries -Of the loire.
“It has never been done on this scale,” said François Braun, president of Samu Urgences on hooly-news.com, from Strasbourg station.
The wagons are transformed into intensive care units with four patients and six caregivers per car. The train is stable allowing to perform “extremely complicated resuscitation gestures”, he said.
A first in Europe, this operation launched to relieve one of the regions of France most affected by the epidemic could be brought to repeat itself.
Philippe Juvin, head of the emergency department of the Pompidou hospital in Paris, suggested on Europe 1 a “massive” transfer of patients to “the regions of France and Europe” where the epidemic will not arrive before two or three weeks, deploring the shortages of protective equipment and tests everywhere in France. “Sometimes I ask myself the question: what are we not missing?”, He launched.
– First death of a gendarme –
“The whole nation is mobilized” assured Wednesday night Emmanuel Macron who promised a “massive investment plan” for the hospital and guaranteeing “an exceptional premium” to carers and all civil servants mobilized.
The epidemic which has killed at least five doctors, made a first victim in the ranks of the gendarmerie: a 51-year-old non-commissioned officer died Wednesday at his home in the barracks of Maisons-Alfort (Val-de-Marne ).
At least 40,000 “new cases of Covid-19” were diagnosed by general practitioners last week, according to estimates by Public Health France, while the number of patients tested positive is only 25,000 since the start of the epidemic.
Confined to their home for more than a week, 85% of French people are “worried” about themselves and their family, according to an Ifop-Fiducial survey carried out on March 24-25 for CNews and Sud Radio, compared to 44% in late January.
And this is only the beginning: the country must expect “difficult days”, said the Director General of Health (DGS), Jérôme Salomon, announcing Wednesday evening a total of nearly 3,000 patients in intensive care (2,827, i.e. 311 more in 24 hours). “It is a considerable number, exceptional in such a short time and for a single disease”.
The East of France remains particularly affected, but the Ile-de-France, from now on, is also facing “major tension” despite “considerable efforts to still open hundreds of beds in intensive care after having already doubled” number of beds available.
– Long and difficult –
“The crisis will be long, the next few days will be particularly difficult,” said Professor Salomon, stressing that “the wave of serious cases” was “already there”.
Faced with this dramatic development, the government will announce “in a few days” the probable extension of the confinement. The scientific council recommended Tuesday to stretch it until April 28.
France must prepare for “a long effort”, underlined the Prime Minister Edouard Philippe: “It is the sanitary emergency which animates all the minds today, but it is also, and it will be more and more , an economic shock, a social shock “.
– Military operation –
The mobilization is also military with the announcement by Emmanuel Macron of an operation “Resilience” which “will be entirely devoted to aid and support to populations, as well as to support public services to cope with the epidemic, in metropolitan France and overseas “.
The amphibious helicopter carrier Mistral will be deployed “immediately” in the southern Indian Ocean and, “in early April, the helicopter carrier Diksmuide will position itself in the Antilles Guyana area in support of overseas territories”.
More than 100,000 people have signed up for the “I want to help” platform, including 40,000 for the health reserve, insisted the head of state.
The situation is particularly cruel in retirement homes where the number of deaths is not exactly known but is at least in the tens of deaths.
On the tests, France is preparing to change scale: within ten days, promised Professor Salomon, France will have a capacity of 25,000 to 30.00 tests per day, against 9,000 today.
A European clinical trial started on Sunday in at least seven countries to test four experimental treatments.
Pending the conclusions of this test, chloroquine, one of the controversial treatments tested, can be administered to patients suffering from “severe forms” of the coronavirus, but not for “less severe” forms. Its use is now governed by a decree published on Thursday in the Official Journal.