By Timothée L’Angevin
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Pediatric emergencies overwhelmed in the face of bronchiolitis. According to the Minister of Health, the “levels of hospitalizations” linked to this epidemic are “unprecedented for 10 years”François Braun told the National Assembly, Wednesday, November 9, 2022.
The Orsan plan triggered
Consequently, the ORSAN EPI-CLIM plan has been launched to “structure the response of the health system and streamline pediatric care in this epidemic context”, according to the government.
The objective: to ensure appropriate care and support for infants and young children affected by the epidemic and their families, to mobilize all health actors (public and private) and to ensure that the continuity of medical care city is territorially adapted to the level of tension encountered.
If bronchiolitis, a respiratory infection small bronchi due to a virus, which mainly affects children under two years old, comes back every year, it is particularly virulent this year.
How is bronchiolitis transmitted and what are the symptoms?
As with other respiratory illnesses, the virus spreads easily from person to person through saliva, coughs and sneezes. It can remain on the hands and objects (like on toys, pacifiers, “cuddly toys”).
According to health authorities, bronchiolitis begins with a simple cold (stuffy or runny nose) and the child coughs a little. Coughing becomes more frequent and breathing may become wheezy. “The child may have trouble breathing and have trouble eating and sleeping. He may have a fever.”
In the majority of cases, bronchiolitis resolves spontaneously after 5 to 10 days, but the cough may persist for 2 to 4 weeks.
A quarter of emergency room visits related to bronchiolitis
For 10,000 emergency room visits, nearly a quarter (2,369) are linked to bronchiolitis in week 44 (October 31 to November 6), according to data from Public Health France. This is much more than during the peak in late November-early December 2021 (1,944), and early December 2012 (2,190), the highest rate in the last 12 years.
In children under two years old, half of hospitalizations after a visit to the emergency room are linked to bronchiolitis at the beginning of November (compared to around 40% during the peaks of previous seasons).
This figure does not bode well for the next few weeks, the peak of this viral disease generally taking place in december.
Especially in the northern half of France
Certain territories are particularly affected by the epidemic, with “an overall intensity of the epidemic more marked in the regions of the northern half of France”, according to Public Health France.
About ten departments have a rate higher than 3,000 for 10,000 emergency visits (Tarn-et-Garonne, Loire-Atlantique, Seine-Saint-Denis, Indre, Somme, Pas-de-Calais, Ain, Essonne, Gironde), and more than twenty exceed 2,500.
Conversely, about ten departments remain rather spared, with a rate of less than 1,000 (Haute-Marne, Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, Aude, Réunion, Hautes-Pyrénées, Corse-du-Sud, Cantal, Hautes -Alps).
To find out what the situation is in your department, see our map below.
If you are unable to view our map, you can access it by clicking directly on this linkto display it in a new window.
Some tips to avoid contagion
To limit transmission to children and close friends and family, it is recommended to wash one’s handsto ventilate the interiors, to avoid confined public places, not to share bottles, pacifiers or unwashed cutlery, to limit contact, and not to smoke near babies and children.
If your child is ill and you wish to consult, tell your doctor before going to his waiting room (it is best to avoid infecting other children).
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