Health: Faced with bronchiolitis epidemic, this doctor calls for ‘closing schools now’

Faced with the accelerated circulation of viruses, doctors are calling for schools to close a week before the Christmas holidays.

Parents of young children will have seen it themselves in recent weeks: absenteeism is particularly strong in schools in France. One of the consequences of the multiplication of epidemics of Covid, influenza and bronchiolitis.

In the columns of the daily newspaper Le Télégramme, the head of pediatrics at Rennes University Hospital, Véronique Despert, cries out in alarm at the influx of sick children in her service, which has reached saturation for long weeks. And for her, only the radical solution of closing schools quickly, a week before the Christmas holidays, would stop the spread of these diseases.

“I think we need to think about closing schools now,” she said. “Children catch the virus at school and pass it on to their little brother or sister. We also have to stop family gatherings. From a scientific point of view, there is no other way”, reasons the doctor.

Particularly early and virulent, the bronchiolitis epidemic swept the country for many weeks, reaching record levels in infants for more than a decade.

The triple epidemic of Covid, influenza and bronchiolitis poses a risk of saturation of hospital services, while the first two diseases have not yet reached their epidemic peak.

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