Monday 29 March 2021
Warning of overcrowded clinics
Parisian medics prepare for triage
In France’s metropolitan region of Paris, the number of corona intensive care patients is increasing threateningly. Doctors are already warning of overcrowding in the clinics in a few weeks and are preparing for triage.
Healthcare officials in the greater Paris area have sounded the alarm due to the high number of corona intensive care patients. “In ten, 15 days or three weeks” there is a threat of “overcrowding” the hospitals, said Remi Salomon, president of the medical commission of the public hospitals in Paris, the broadcaster BFMTV. There is a “feeling of anger” among the doctors, who feared they would “find themselves in a situation that would force them to take disaster medicine,” said Salomon.
In France, the number of intensive care patients almost reached the high of the second corona wave in autumn. According to the health authorities, 4872 corona patients were treated in the intensive care units on Sunday, 81 more than the day before. At the height of the second wave in mid-November, there were 4903 patients in French intensive care units. “We will have no choice but to lockdown again,” said Salomon. “All the brakes should be pulled”, the schools would also have to be closed before Easter.
41 emergency medicine directors warned in an open letter in the Journal du Dimanche that they were preparing for a ‘triage’ because of the threat of overcrowding. “This triage will affect all patients, Covid or non-Covid.” They would not have experienced such a situation “not even during the worst assassinations in recent years.” “We cannot remain silent without violating the Hippocratic Oath, which we once took,” declared the directors.
A triage is used when doctors have to decide which patients they prefer to treat when medical capacities are limited. In the case of corona patients, the doctors would have to decide who should first be connected to a ventilator and who not.