French and Riviera News Thursday 28th October 2021


Draguignan hospital closes A&E department at night - The hospital centre of Draguignan in the Var is to close its A&E department at night, due to the lack of staff. From tomorrow Friday 29th October from 8.30pm to 8.30am the service will be closed. After months of the health crisis, little change to wages or even working conditions, the hospital's human resources are under immense strain. The closure is expected to last at least five weeks with patients being referred to neighbouring establishments in Fréjus, Brignoles or Toulon.

Some units in French hospitals forced to close temporarily – Meanwhile according to France's Health Minister Olivier Véran "a number of units in French hospitals have been forced to temporarily closed, due to lack of caregivers". According to a flash survey conducted by Professor Jean-François Delfraissy, president of the scientific council on Covid-19, about 20% of beds are currently closed in the CHU and CHR of France due to lack of staff.

Survey shows risks of poor mental health for future doctors – A survey published on Wednesday by student and intern trade union organizations has shown that 52% of the medical students who responded had experienced anxiety symptoms over the seven days preceding the questionnaire and 25% had to deal with a major or characterized depressive episode over the last twelve months. The survey showed that more than half of medical students have anxiety symptoms and a quarter have been harassed in the past 12 months.

Access to oil depot blocked - The oil depot in Puget-sur-Argens has been blocked by protestors. On Wednesday morning protestors gathered in front of the oil depot to denounce the rise in fuel prices in recent weeks in France blocking the access. Police were soon on site determined to move them on. According to reports the employees of the oil depot were not involved in the roadblock.

Drug trafficking trial in Corsica - A drug trafficking trial in Corsica has taken a surprise turn after the defendants appeared in court on Wednesday October 27th without their lawyers who left the stand in protest at the court's refusal to postpone the trial. Several people are on trial thought to be some of the key players of a drug network between Europe and Corsica. The Ajaccio criminal court will deliver its decision on December 17th.

Sanary sur mer has elected a new mayor - Daniel Alsters has been appointed as the new mayor of Sanary sur Mer elected unanimously by the municipal majority. The city of western Toulon has elected Alsters who succeeds the resigning former mayor, Ferdinand Bernhard, who had been put on trial in June 2015. After years of proceedings, he was finally sentenced to one year in prison by the Court of Appeal of Aix-en-Provence and 5 years of ineligibility. His resignation as mayor of Sanary dates from October 2021.

Trial former socialist MP - Meanwhile in Marseille former socialist MP Henri Jibrayel is currently on trial for embezzlement of public funds appeared in court on Wednesday. Accused of using his expense allowance to "play at the casino and purchase a car for his personal use" the elected representative pointed out that at the time, "the deputies used the money as they wished." The judgment will be rendered on 22 November.

One year prison sentence for man who pretended to be the nephew of Brigitte Macron - The Paris Criminal Court has handed a one-year prison sentence to a man who pretended to be Brigitte Macron's nephew. The 35-year-old defendant was sentenced on Wednesday. The defendant had used the deceit to obtain advantages and privileges from luxury establishments, companies or institutions. Now 35 years old, he will serve his prison sentence under a regime of electronic surveillance at home. He will also be subject to mandatory medical follow-up.

Mayor of Paris and Presidential candidate slams regional health agencies in France - Presidential candidate and mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo has announced that she would abolish the regional health agencies, at the heart of the covid crisis, if she were elected, judging them as being "useless". Hidalgo had already expressed her wish to abolish the ARS considering that they had not played their role of anticipating and managing the crisis of the epidemic. The candidate, who was making her first campaign trip on the theme of health felt that "these agencies have become accounting agencies", which "are only there to contain health spending", when they "should have started from the health needs of the population".

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