How is it that in the second wave, Quebec is still the Canadian epicenter of COVID-19? If there was only one answer, simple and obvious, the recipe for recovery would quickly be found.
The reality is that the state of affairs is the product of several factors. Some come under the Legault government. Others, from the dismal state of the health system bequeathed by the Couillard-Barrette duo.
Others, according to polls on the behavior of Canadians, a higher proportion of Quebecers who, since deconfinement, neglect health instructions.
The cumulative effect of the set results in a perfect storm. In the face of the pandemic, within Canada, our “distinct” society is once again distinguished in the negative.
Since the start of the crisis and with the end of confinement, we can certainly attribute a number of failures to the Legault government, including these. Public communication has become confused. Repeated hesitation before imposing coercive measures which are nevertheless necessary in prevention.
A national public health whose boss, Horacio Arruda, instead of being politically independent, is deputy minister. His initial messages urging people not to wear the mask also caused confusion.
However, we already knew that asymptomatic people could be contagious. Ditto for the known utility of the mask against respiratory viruses. My own first column on the subject dates from mid-March …
Faced with the spring slaughter in CHSLDs, the choice to split society into two in the press briefings – on the one hand, frail seniors and on the other, the less affected community – has helped to disempower young people.
The persistent mobility of staff between establishments has made them vectors of contagion. The deconfinement was in a hurry and the tracing system slow.
Would the government’s summer discretion also have facilitated the release of some Quebecers? Which has been going on ever since.
That said, under the command of François Legault, thousands of new beneficiary attendants for CHSLDs have been recruited and trained. A Herculean feat.
Above all, he had to deal with the devastating effects of years of austerity in health. Because of the Barrette “reforms”, he also came up against the installed lack of accountability and adaptability in the ultra-centralized bureaucracy of the CISSS and CIUSSS.
In a constant emergency situation, government action has slowed down considerably. Difficult to drive at high speed with a network whose engine turns in the vacuum of an elephantine organization chart.
One thing is certain. One day, surveys will tell us much more. Obviously, nothing is simple.
After six months of a global pandemic, the crisis unit under Mr. Legault, I repeat, would surely benefit from an addition of “new blood”. Yesterday the Globe and Mail was proposing the same thing to his Ontario counterpart, Doug Ford.
Time is running out, however. This part also belongs to us: let us reduce our non-essential social contacts as much as possible and follow the instructions. As long as it takes …