June 20, 2021

The ‘Francino effect’ (1): The toilets explode after the 9-M festival



One day after massive concentrations caused by the end of the state of alarm, the journalist Carles Francino shocked with an emotional story, on his return to the ‘Cadena Ser’, on the havoc that continues to cause covid-19. He has lost six or seven kilos, has been without a voice for a while (he has already recovered), has suffered a stroke and has faced the death of a close relative.

The emotion of the also collaborator of El Periódico de Catalunya, gave way to outrage at the difficult conditions in which the sanitary and for the irresponsibility of those who celebrate in the street, as if the pandemic were already history, the end of the toughest restrictions. Behind him, several health workers take the floor and express in first person how work is still in hospitals and the discomfort caused by “selfish” attitudes. It’s the ‘Francino effect’.

Miguel Sánchez, head of intensive medicine at Hospital Clínico San Carlos

CLINICAL HOSPITAL Miguel Sánchez, head of the Intensive Medicine service at Hospital Clínico San Carlos.


“I would go through the ICU for those of the merrymaking”

Miguel Sanchez, head of Intensive Medicine at the San Carlos Clinical Hospital (Madrid), was not on duty last Saturday but, as Carles Francino denounced, it is true that from the intensive care unit of this health center you could hear from afar “some merriment”. In fact, dozens of young people took their celebration to a nearby street, as the nurse Daniel Savoini demonstrated with a video on Twitter that has gone viral.

The massive celebrations for the end of the state of alarm have “made the health workers feel bad,” explains Sánchez. According to the intensivist, those who gathered without a mask or safety distance are “people who are not in reality” and to whom “I would walk through the ICU“, so that you know the situation and know that the pandemic it still seriously affects many people, including young people.

His unit, like the rest of the Madrid ucis, continues “full of patients”, specifically there are 50, half of them due to covid-19. The youngest is 48 years old, but a 21-year-old boy was recently discharged, which shows that “those who were in the bottles are not protected” against the virus, nor are they exempt from ending up intubated in an ICU.

For this reason, according to him, the statement issued by 13 scientific societies in March in which they demand that the authorities be ban all kinds of agglomerations that increase the risk of transmission and, therefore, hospital pressure, given that health workers, after 14 months of the pandemic, are “physically and physically tired”.

Pere Domingo, coordinator of the ‘covid plant’ of the Hospital de Sant Pau

ROBERT RAMOS The Sant Pau internist Pere Domingo.


“Some are tired of not having a party; others, of working”

“The word is disappointment.” This is how the internist defines Pere Domingo, coordinator of the ‘covid plant’ of the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau (Barcelona) his feelings after the images in different cities of Spain of the riot after the end of the state of alarm. “It seems that people only obey if they are forced with a high degree of coercion”, the Mint.

Domingo does not rule out that there is a “peak of infections” or a “fifth wave” after what happened. “It is obvious that the conditions can exist for it, because there were no neither distance nor mask. But we have an advantage this time: the increasing penetration of the vaccination rate. In other waves, this protection factor did not exist “, he reflects. He believes that the good weather.

Domingo claims to be aware of the “pandemic fatigue”, but he points out that those who are the most tired are they, the health workers. “Some are tired of not having a party; others of working. So it seems like a disrespect”. Asks “less applause” and “more other acknowledgments”, starting with “helping to prevent the virus from spreading.”

Of course, this internist is not clear if the state of alarm should have lasted longer, since “economic factors” are added to health. But he highlights that coronavirus patients continue to enter the ucis. Between a 25% and 30% of critics’ beds are occupied by them. Sant Pau Hospital also has another 25 patients on the floor. “It has been a year that we have not stopped treating patients with covid-19. And although it is true that the people who are getting worse are now between 50 and 60 years old, they also enter young lads “, warns.

Joan Ramon Masclans, head of Intensive Medicine at Hospital del Mar

RICARD CUGAT The Chief of Intensive Medicine of the Sea, Joan Ramon Masclans.


“The applause has turned into slaps”

For the Chief of Intensive Medicine at Hospital del Mar (Barcelona), Joan Ramon Masclans, the testimony of journalist Carles Francino, who spent 47 days with coronavirus, is “very important” as he is a “speaker.” “Reflects the uncertainty and suffering of those who get sick. It is very, very hard, and looking at the images on Saturday it seems that some think that it will not happen to them. It can happen to all of us. It can happen to a percentage of people who went out that way on Saturday and it is the day to day of many families, “he says.

If, as a result of last weekend’s riot, infections increase, says Masclans, “It would be outrageous.” The toilets are “expectant” to see the consequences. “We will know in two weeks. There is still a lot of virus circulating and these people were not immunized, so transmission could be high. “This doctor asks for” caution. “ “We risk a lot”, alert.

Nor does he hide his anger. “The applause of a year ago has turned into slapping the toilets, to the people who have passed the covid-19 and to those who have stayed on the road. We have not learned, “he complains. On Saturday night, the Hospital del Mar admitted to his emergency room more people from poisonings than from covid-19. And, although the occupation by the virus is “increasingly low”, the ucis are still full. “We’re above 200%. Before the pandemic, we had an ICU for 18 people and this morning there were 22 covid-19 patients. In total, we have about 40 critical patients with and without coronavirus, “he explains.

The forecast is that the further vaccination progresses, the more the epidemic situation improves. But events like Saturday’s complicate it. “It takes a lot of prudence and responsibility”, insists.

Elena Álvarez, Emergency Nurse at Severo Ochoa Hospital

Elena Álvarez, Emergency Nurse at the Severo Ochoa University Hospital.


“Freedom is having health, not partying”

The nurse Elena Alvarez, which has been working on the entire pandemic Emergencies of the Severo Ochoa University Hospital, in Madrid, lived the images of the massive parties on May 9 as something “unreal”. “It seemed more like the end of the pandemic and not the end of the state of alarm.”

Álvarez does not hesitate to cross out the people who participated as “selfish” and “irresponsible” because the virus continues to claim many lives and leave many others hospitalized for days. But, in his opinion, the problem is that the figures for infected and daily deaths and, therefore, many people “do not understand the extent of what continues to happen.”

In his hospital, the ‘covid axis’ of the emergency room is “butt” and, sometimes, they do not even find enough beds to enter the patients. Therefore, he asks citizens “I respect“towards the work carried out by health workers and people who continue to comply with the rules, given that” freedom is having health and be able to enjoy yours, and not go out to party or drink bottles “.

Álvarez remembers that the toilets are “exhausted” physically and mentally. Therefore, seeing behaviors that can increase incidence and, therefore, the pressure on hospitals in the short term will not make them “throw in the towel”, but it comes at a time when the situation “overwhelms them”. Consequently, it demands from society that mass celebrations without protection measures are not repeated.

Ricard Ferrer, head of the ICU of the Vall d’Hebron Hospital

FERRAN NADEU The head of the Vall d’Hebron ICU, Ricard Ferrer.


“Many pregnant women with covid-19 continue to enter”

Knowing whether or not infections will rise after the festivities on Saturday is, according to the Head of Intensive Medicine at Hospital Vall d’Hebron, Ricard Ferrer, “speculative”. He prefers not to give his opinion on the matter. “I do not know what is going to happen”. He says this keeping in mind that the percentage of the vaccinated population is increasing.

Income from covid-19 in Vall d’Hebron has dropped and the outlook is for this trend to continue. “The situation is one of less entry of patients and fewer patients in plants,” he says. But he doesn’t really know what’s going to happen either.

It does celebrate that patients with covid-19 over 70 are now “anecdotal”. “We still have enough patients with coronavirus, but entry has slowed down a lot. Those who have decided not to get vaccinated enter especially,” he reveals.

A group of concern right now: pregnant women, until recently not included in the vaccination plan. “They keep coming in pregnant with covid-19, it is a population group that must be protected as soon as possible. It is very important. There are two lives, “he values. In Vall d’Hebron there are three pregnant women with coronavirus.

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