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HEALTH

MAP: Where in France are Covid-19 cases rising and which areas are low risk?

Covid-19 continues to spread at increased speed across the French territory, and public health authorities now have 88 mainland départements on their risk list. Here's look at what that means.

MAP: Where in France are Covid-19 cases rising and which areas are low risk?
Photo: AFP

Of France's 96 mainland départements, 88 were considered at a “moderate” or “elevated” risk for Covid-19 by Santé Publique France in their latest update on October 1st. 

Mainland France now has just 8 départements which are considered low risk. 

 
A département's level is decided by Santé Publique France in consultation with the regional health authority. A range of factors are taken into account including the number of new cases, the number of clusters, the R rate, hospital admissions and the number of patients in intensive care.

Elevated risk zones

The dark blue areas were those at elevated risk, which generally indicates a high level spread of more than 50 new cases confirmed per 100,000 inhabitants over the preceding seven days.

Moderate risk zones

The lighter blue zones on the map were those at moderate risk.

Santé Publique France labels a département at 'moderate' risk generally when health authorities have registered between 10 and 50 new coronavirus cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last seven days.

IN NUMBERS: How fast are France's Covid-19 rates increasing?

Low risk zones

These are areas with fewer than 10 cases per 100,000 over the last 7 days and where there is little pressure on the areas hospitals from Covid-19 patients. As the map shows, there are not many of these “low risk” area left in France.

Infection rates over the last seven days

The map below from Santé Publique France also gives an idea of where cases are rising more rapidly than others. The ùap is based on the infection or incidence rates in different départements over the last seven days. The areas coloured dark blue are those with the highest infection rates.

The map is interactive so you can zoom in and hover your mouse over each département to find the infection rate.

 
What about red zones?

You might have also seen the French government's latest map, which assigns all areas in France a shade of red.

This rating is based on both case numbers and the pressure on local hospitals and – crucially – determines what restrictions are in place on daily life.

Areas show in pink have a lower level of restrictions than the red areas and dark red – the 'maximum alert zones' have the most restrictions of all.

So far only two areas – the metropole ares of Marseille and Paris – have been put on maximum risk which involves the closure of all bars, gyms, leisure centres and swilling pools and a ban on gatherings of more than 10 people.

Find out what your area is coloured on the restrictions map HERE.

 
 

 

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STRIKES

French doctors to stage more strikes in February

General practitioners in France are planning another industrial action that will see doctors' offices closed as they call for better investment in community healthcare.

French doctors to stage more strikes in February

Primary care doctors in France announced plans to strike again in February, after walkouts in December and over the Christmas-New Year holidays in early January.

The strike will take place on Tuesday, February 14th, and it comes just a few weeks ahead of the end-of-February deadline where France’s social security apparatus, Assurance Maladie, must reach an agreement to a structure for fees for GPs for the next five years.

Hospital doctors in France are largely barred from striking, but community healthcare workers such as GPs are self-employed and therefore can walk out. 

Their walk-out comes amid mass strike actions in February over the French government’s proposed pension reform. You can find updated information on pensions strikes HERE.

Previous industrial action led to widespread closures of primary care medical offices across the country. In December, strike action saw between 50 to 70 percent of doctor’s surgeries closed.

READ MORE: Urgent care: How to access non-emergency medical care in France

New concerns among GPs

According to reporting by La Depeche, in the upcoming strike in February primary care doctors will also be walking out over a new fear – the possibility of compulsory ‘on-call’ hours.

Currently, French GPs take on-call hours on a voluntary basis. Obligatory on-call time for primary care doctors was scrapped in the early 2000s after GPs mobilised against the requirement.

However, representatives from the Hospital Federation have called for it to be reinstated in order to help relieve emergency services.

Additionally, GPs are calling for Saturday shifts to considered as part of their standard working week, in order to allow for a two-day weekend.

Striking primary care doctors are more broadly calling for actions by the government and Assurance Maladie to help make the field more appealing to younger physicians entering the profession, as the country faces more medical deserts, and for working conditions to be improved.

Those walking out hope to see administrative procedures to be simplified and for the basic consultation fee – typically capped to €25 – to be doubled to €50.

In France patients pay the doctor upfront for a visit, and then a portion of the fee is reimbursed by the government via the carte vitale health card.

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