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US News VIDEO. Coronavirus in Marseille: Battle of numbers, saturated hospitals ... Where is the epidemic really?

21:30  24 september  2020
21:30  24 september  2020 Source:   20minutes.fr

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Elected Marseillais and Minister of Health engage in a bitter battle of figures which sows doubt on the reality of the coronavirus epidemic in Marseille

Des Marseillais patientent pour un dépistage du coronavirus © Jean-Francois Badias / AP / SIPA Marseillais wait for a screening of the coronavirus HEALTH - Marseille elected officials and Minister of Health engage in a bitter battle of figures which sows doubt on the reality of the coronavirus epidemic in Marseille

"I ask the government ten days before the implementation of new measures . If at the end of next week the indicators start to rise again, we will be ready to take the necessary decisions. "On the one hand, this Thursday, in front of an audience of journalists , Benoît Payan, first deputy mayor of Marseille , expressed his incomprehension, while the epidemiological situation" may improve in the days to come "In the second city of France according to him, in view of statistics of Covid-19 " encouraging ".

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"The official figures of the Ministry of Health indicate that the peak of this phase of the epidemic was reached in the week of September 3 to 9", thus affirms the socialist, who claims "a scientific serenity, which is based on on concrete figures, […] not on ministerial communication operations. "

" We cannot afford to wait ten days "

On the other hand, in this strange battle of numbers between Marseille and Paris, Olivier Véran, has a completely different story. On Wednesday, the Minister of Health placed the Aix-Marseille metropolis in a "maximum alert zone" for the coronavirus, leading to the implementation of draconian measures.

A decision justified in particular by the incidence rate, greater than 250 cases per 100,000 inhabitants of the metropolis and 100 cases per 100,000 inhabitants among the elderly in the area. “According to the indicators, we are in a situation where we cannot afford to wait ten more days,” the Prime Minister’s entourage told BFMTV. However, the government never gives precise and recent figures on the Marseille situation. Contacted by 20 Minutes, the Regional Health Agency of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d´Azur region was also unable to communicate them to us.

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A rising rate… and a falling rate

“The incidence rate, or rate of new positive cases, in Marseille has only increased since August”, says Pascal Auquier, professor of epidemiology at the Aix-Marseille University and the Assistance Publique des Hôpitaux de Marseille (AP-HM). It is true that for example, this rate was 214 the week of September 15 in the department, against 186.7 the previous week.

“The positivity rate is only decreasing, however pleads Benoît Payan. It is 8.2% here against 10% for Paris according to Public Health France. "" Extremely recently, over the last three or four days, the rate has fallen slightly, while remaining much higher than the national rate, recognizes Pascal Auquier. And people are explaining that the epidemic is over. But in three days, we don't have enough hindsight! "" Three or four days of stabilization displayed are not enough to consider that we are really on the right track ", tackled this Wednesday evening Olivier Véran.

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Saturated hospitals

Above all, a real problem now arises in Marseille hospitals. "We are at saturation point," laments Laurent Zieleskiewicz, deputy head of the anesthesia and intensive care unit at the North Hospital of Marseille. The number of patients in intensive care with Covid has multiplied by 20 in one month. We run at 90% filling. We are reaching the limit of optimization and we want to do everything to avoid deprogramming. "

" All weekend long, we did nothing but fill up, says Sabine Valéra, intensive care nurse at the North Hospital and president of the federation of intensive care nurses. We now have a full unit and had to open another. And since there is a lack of medical and paramedical personnel, it is shared with another service. We try to make adjustments from day to day. "

" Open beds, do not close restaurants "

According to our information, this Thursday, in the middle of the day, the AP-HM had opened 212 Covid beds against 139 beds only a fortnight ago. However, this Thursday also, 40 of the 45 resuscitation beds available to patients with Covid-19 were occupied. Or a rate of 90%, well beyond the critical limit of 30% set by the minister on Wednesday evening.

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"If the situation worsens, if other people arrive, I really don't see how we're going to do it," worries Audrey Jolibois, secretary of the FO union of the AP-HM. An urgent and very tense situation which prompted Benoît Payan to challenge the government, by way of conclusion of his press conference. “Open beds, don't close restaurants! "Asks the deputy mayor. Because, as Pascal Auquier points out, "the people who are infected today will partly arrive in intensive care units in ten to fifteen days. "

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Coronavirus in Marseille: Hospitals are starting to deprogram operations in the face of the second wave .
To cope with the coronavirus epidemic, Marseille hospitals are starting to deprogram operations © Christophe Simon / AP / SIPA Caregivers from the '' AP-HM EPIDEMIA - To face the coronavirus epidemic, Marseille hospitals are starting to deprogram operations It was a solution that the public assistance of hospitals of Marseille (AP-HM) wanted avoid at all costs.

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