By MC Nouvellon
Monday, December 14, 2020 marked the start of the massive screening campaign in Le Havre (Seine-Maritime). (© MC Nouvellon)
2,941 people passed through the doors of the various screening centers in the metropolis of Le Havre (Seine-Maritime), Monday, December 14, 2020, on the first day of the massive test campaign. This is “almost six times what a typical day in this area represents”, indicates the Regional Health Agency. On the other hand, it is well below the figures hoped for by the mayor of Le Havre Édouard Philippe, who during the council that same day displayed as an ambition between 20 to 50% of the population concerned.
43 positive cases
The first wave of screening detected 43 positive cases among the volunteers who underwent the operation. “Thanks to the unprecedented system set up in this area, as soon as their results were obtained, these 43 people were able immediately and at the place of their screening, to benefit from contact tracing, concerted support in isolation, by personalized advice and the implementation of a range of services in case of difficulties, ”adds the ARS.
20 screening centers dedicated to the campaign
A figure which may therefore seem encouraging but remains far from the ambition displayed for this campaign. In the space of a week, the mayor of the city, Édouard Philippe, hopes at best to test 50% of the population of the agglomeration, he confided to our colleagues from the Sunday newspaper. On the eve of the campaign’s launch, however, he admitted that “we will undoubtedly be below”. And during the council Monday evening, he revised the numbers down.
We have organized ourselves to ensure, at a minimum, that 20 to 25% of the population of the urban community can be tested. If we reached 20 or even 25%, that would already be not bad at all.
Edward Philippe, Mayor of Le Havre
Offered in 20 dedicated places that can screen between 500 and 1,000 people per day, but also in various large companies in the city or even four high schools, these tests are done free of charge and without an appointment.
Carried out in Liverpool, an English metropolis with 500,000 inhabitants (against 270,000 out of the 54 municipalities of Le Havre Seine Métropole), a similar operation had made it possible to test 120,000 people in four days.