Paris hospitals urged to treat Covid crisis as 'natural disaster'

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Hospital intensive care units in the Paris region are already swamped by the Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak. Mediapart has seen emails in which the regional health authority has asked hospital chiefs to free up a thousand beds in 48 hours as a matter of urgency and to transform their hospitals into disaster zone facilities. There has even been talk of nurses having to be pressed into service. Meanwhile hospital staff, who are poorly protected and in some cases themselves suffering from the virus, say they will “settle their scores” with the health authorities later. Caroline Coq-Chodorge reports.

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Hospital intensive care medical staff in the Paris region are seeing deaths on a daily basis. Each day they are using medical criteria to decide whether patients with chronic symptoms should be admitted or not to the intensive care unit.