Coronavirus: France unequally affected


Public Health France makes available indicators for monitoring the COVID-19 epidemic by department, in order to follow the day-to-day evolution of hospitalisations in our regions and monitor the intensity of the epidemic. UP' offers you the graphs of Public Health France, revealing a national epidemic with variable geography.

Since 7 April, Public Health France has been publishing daily new data to monitor the intensity of the Covid-19 epidemic via its observatory. cartographic GEODES The number of people newly admitted to hospital each day, as well as the number of resuscitation admissions, for each department. "The most scrutinized indicator today to assess the dynamics of the epidemic is the number of new admissions to intensive care units. ' John Hultquist, director of intelligence analysis for the cybersecurity company FireEye, according to François Dabisprofessor of epidemiology at the University of Bordeaux. A figure that is evolving and which allows the authorities to announce, in France, Italy and Spain, that containment is beginning to bear fruit.

The graphs below show that as of April 8, a return to normal has not yet occurred, as the analysis of these data at the national level shows that the peak was reached on April 1, the day on which more than 4,000 hospitalizations were recorded, a figure that was halved four days later. However, the latest statistics delivered on Monday 7 and Tuesday 8 April showed a further increase in the number of hospitalisations.

Source: Public Health France - Last update: 8 April 2020

A peak can be observed at the national level, but the situation is not the same throughout the country. This is particularly the case in the Grand Est and Ile de France, which has nothing to do with the western regions.

But while the situation seemed to calm down between April 4 and 6, data from the beginning of the week show new hospitalizations, with between 90 and 120 new arrivals per day.

Ile-de-France particularly affected

12 million people are under tension in the Ile de France region. And Paris and its entire inner suburbs are the four most affected departments in France.

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Source: Public Health France - Last update: 8 April 2020

The Great East, historical focus of the epidemic

Haut-Rhin, Bas-Rhin and Moselle are the departments where the number of new hospitalizations regularly exceeds 100 patients per day. Despite a situation that seemed to calm down between 4 and 6 April, data from the beginning of the week show new hospitalizations, with between 90 and 120 new arrivals.

Source: Public Health France - Last update: 8 April 2020

The epidemic, department by department

Looking at the graphs below produced by Franceinfo, we can see that the West and the South-West are, to date, relatively spared by the coronavirus. In 48 departments, i.e. almost half of the territory, the number of hospitalizations since March 19, does not exceed 200 patients. Apart from the Var (from 32 to 20 cases per day), the Vendée, Finistère and Nièvre, where hospitalisations have fallen, the other departments have seen their hospitalisations increase again in recent days.


What explains such a geographical disparity in VIDOC-19 cases between regions?

Clearly, some regions are more affected by the epidemic. A situation that intrigues ... In addition to the population density per region, the dispersion of the habitat, the space available in certain regions, which makes containment less difficult to comply with and which imposes a clear disparity in the number of serious cases, other factors come into play.
For some doctors, we should not neglect the fact that some populations are more fragile than others in the regions, due to their more precarious conditions such as the obligation to go to work, to take public transport, ... Everything also depends on hospitalisation criteria. For example, in the Ile de France region, only very severe forms of the disease are hospitalized.

For Pascal Crépey, Professor of Epidemiology at the École des hautes études en santé publique, one of the reasons is "... the fact that the disease is a major cause of death in the United States. the appearance of "clusters" or groupings of cases in a region. Thus the Great East, which was particularly affected, was the starting point of the epidemic in France because of the cluster of cases in Mulhouse resulting from a gathering in a church and the contamination of several hundred worshippers in one go. "As he explains in the Express,Crisis management at the beginning of the epidemic was important in the further spread of the virus in the territory. The introductory phases were very important in the later stages, i.e. the initial outbreaks of the first cases created a start-up dynamic in these regions. In this respect, the gathering in Mulhouse was a major accelerator of the epidemic in the Great East.. ».

But this professor of epidemiology gives the case of what happened in Brittany, in Morbihan where an outbreak of contamination was indeed detected at the beginning of the epidemic. But there, " Many people had confined themselves before they were even called in to ask them to limit their movements, they had taken steps to limit the spread of the virus as much as possible. There was a general awareness among the population that was able to limit the impact of these over-propagation phases. " 

Another analysis, that of the union of general practitioners MG France, in an survey published on April 7: " The geographical distribution of cases is not homogeneous, with some regions appearing to be more affected by the epidemic. Extrapolating these results to all 60,000 general practitioners in our country, it is estimated that more than one and a half million people were infected with the coronavirus between 17 March and 3 April. These figures are consistent with the duration of the epidemic phase characterized by a high attack rate of Sars-Cov-2, which is higher than that of the influenza virus that affects between 2 and 6 million people in France every winter during the 6 to 7 weeks that the epidemic lasts. Without wishing to substitute itself for the professionals of polling and statistical analysis, MG France believes that these figures constitute important information. Important information because it shows the strong involvement of general practitioners in public health. "

Will some regions make it through the epidemic "wave" of flooding? Western Regional Health Agencies are very cautious. It remains to be seen whether the containment measures will have an effect, as long as everyone respects them.


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