(Paris) President Emmanuel Macron promised on Tuesday that the production of masks and respirators would quickly ramp up in France, hit hard by a shortage of equipment and where the coronavirus made more 3500 dead.
France Media Agency
Visiting a mask production factory in Saint-Barthélémy-d'Anjou, in the West, the French president promised that, by the end of April, “more than 10 millions “of masks would be manufactured per week in France, against 3.3 million before the onset of the pandemic in France.
He also announced the creation of a consortium composed of four large industrial groups to manufacture by mid-May 10 00 0 respirators, in order to equipping hospitals overwhelmed by serious cases of patients.
According to a report on Tuesday evening, 3523 people died in hospitals which identify 22 800 other patients, an increase of 1749 since Monday. Among them, a new influx of heavy cases in intensive care (+ 457) where are admitted to date 5565 patients.
“We must rebuild our national and European sovereignty”, pleaded Macron, recognizing the excessive dependence of the country on imports of masks, and promising “full and entire independence” from France. here at the end of the year.
But, when asked about the responsibility of the executive, criticized for its “unpreparedness” in the face of the crisis, the head of state described as “irresponsible” those “who are already seeking to sue” and called for the unity of the country. “The time will come” of “complete transparency”, he assured.
In saturated hospitals, first-line caregivers continue to deplore the lack of protection in France.
Mask needs are evaluated at 40 millions per week for nursing staff and establishments for the elderly (Ehpad) .
The mask factory of the Kolmi-Hopen company visited by the Head of State is one of the largest of the four French producers and is currently operating 24 hours on 24.
To meet needs, France has also ordered a billion masks and is organizing an “airlift” with China, the first delivery of 8.5 million of which arrived on Monday before a second delivery of 12 millions expected Wednesday.
Organize the outing
Tests, another nerve in the war against the coronavirus, will see their capacity increase to the level of “50 at 55 00 0 tests per day in a relatively short timeframe, ”said Bruno Lina, professor of virology and member of the scientific council consulted by the French State.
“This is something that will settle in and be functional at least in a first wave within ten days,” he said on LCI.
This greater ability to test is a first step to organize the containment trip which started exactly two weeks ago in France.
“It is important to see what will happen in the coming days to begin to imagine when we can say that containment, as it is organized today, stops”, a estimated Professor Lina.
While the schools are at a standstill, “between 5 and 8% of the pupils” have been “lost” by their teachers who cannot reach them to ensure the desired “educational continuity”, according to the French minister education.
Another consequence of the confinement, Orly airport closes its doors Tuesday evening for an indefinite period, no longer accommodating only state flights, medical flights and emergency diversions.
Transfers of patients outside the most affected regions (Grand Est and now the Paris region) are continuing.
In the midst of a debate on the supposed benefits of certain drugs, the Medicines Agency warned of the possible “serious side effects” of some of them, currently being tested.
“Thirty” of serious adverse effects, including “three deaths” in patients with coronavirus are being investigated to determine whether these events are related or not to the treatments which have been administered to them: Plaquenil (hydroxychloroquine) but also other drugs such as Kaletra (an antiretroviral combining lopinavir / ritonavir), Dominique Martin, director general of the Medicines Agency told AFP.
Other tracks are being tested. The public assistance-hospitals of Paris (AP-HP) is thus testing the possibility of oxygenation of patients at home, to cope with the influx of patients in the Paris region. And a solution from the blood of a sea worm with very high oxygenation powers could thus be administered to ten patients as part of a clinical trial.