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French emergency services reach crisis point

BMJ 2002; 325 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.325.7363.514 (Published 07 September 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;325:514
  1. Alexander Dorozynski
  1. Paris

    French hospitals are in a state of crisis, with emergency wards oversaturated in recent weeks because of a shortage of doctors and nurses.

    In Lille and other cities in the north of the country, some emergency patients and babies born prematurely had to be transferred to hospitals in Belgium. Emergency services in Marseilles have been disorganised owing to the resignation of several doctors.

    In the south west, nurses are being imported from Spain, whereas in the east many are being attracted by offers from Switzerland.

    An unexpected increase in the number of births, and particularly multiple and premature births, has placed an additional burden on maternity wards. The number of births, …

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