Medical deserts: Mobisanté 48, an emergency solution for villages without a doctor

Medical deserts: Mobisanté 48, an emergency solution for villages without a doctor

Le Dr Daniel Durand reprend du service avec le Mobisanté 48. Midi Libre – Célian Guignard

Ce nouveau dispositif, véritable cabinet médical mobile, est porté par l’association Lozère Avenir Santé et financé en intégralité par l’Agence régionale de santé. Il était à Châteauneuf-de-Randon, ce mardi 12 mars. Présentation.

Doctor Daniel Durand has been retired since March 31, 2023. However, on this Tuesday, March 12, 2024, the former Mendois general practitioner returns to service, on Place Du-Guesclin in Châteauneuf-de -Randon. The 68-year-old man is not opening a practice in this village of Margeride nestled at some 1,280 m above sea level and has been looking for a new doctor for a year and a half. If he is there, it is because he accepted the proposal from the Lozère Santé Avenir association to join the small brigade of practitioners of Mobisanté 48.

This brand new system in Lozère, fully financed by the Regional Health Agency to the tune of 180,000 € for its first year, is a real mobile medical office. It will serve four municipalities in need of a general practitioner: Serverette, Châteauneuf-de-Randon, Le Massegros-Causses-Gorges and La Bastide-Puylaurent. The goal: to allow people who are out of care or without a treating doctor to benefit from a consultation.

Mobisanté 48, instructions for use

Le Mobisanté 48 goes on the first Tuesday of the month à Serverette, the second Tuesday of the month at Châteauneuf-de-Randon, the third Tuesday of the month at Massegros, the fourth Tuesday of the month at La Bastide-Puylaurent. To make an appointment, only one telephone number: 05 61 36 39 22. If all the slots are not occupied, patients without Appointments can be made. On site, as in a traditional office, the patient is taken care of à upon his arrival to complete his file, before he waits in a dedicated space. of town hall. Other contact:

Medical deserts: Mobisanté 48, an emergency solution for villages without a doctor

A rental agreement with driver was signed between Lozère Avenir Santé and the Red Cross for the vehicle. Midi Libre – Célian Guignard

"The local symbol of the national sinking of medicine"

For Doctor Daniel Durand, nephew of Adrien Durand, former deputy mayor of the village and professional doctor, participating in this new adventure makes sense, a lot of meaning. "I don'consider myself too run down. I can still help. A day here and there isn't much, he begins by joking, before changing his tone< em>. "I also think of my uncle, obviously, he who worked seven days a week. He even used skis to visit his patients. It's terrible to see the disaster of his village after everything he's done. Châteauneuf is the local symbol of the national disaster of medicine." 

With the Mobisanté 48, Doctor Durand does not expect miracles, simply "to help out". "The bus is a stopgap solution. We see the person for an emergency and there is no follow-up. But it's better than nothing." He recalls the critical situation in which Lozère finds itself: " Even in the city it is very complicated, if not impossible, to find a doctor even though there is one. They are no longer taking new patients."

Three doctors and four nurses

The diagnosis is made. The practitioner sees no other solutions than to "review the system" to cure it. "The first measure would be to shorten studies. In my time, you were a doctor in seven years. Then it went to eight. Now ten. It's way too much. In five years, a general practitioner should be able to be trained."

To launch Mobisanté 48, Lozère Santé Avenir surveyed 26 retired general practitioners. Three responded favorably. In addition to Doctor Durand, Doctor Claude Fleury, who practiced in Aumont-Aubrac, and Doctor Hélène Boulard, who had her practice in Saint-Chély-d'Apcher, came on board. Four nurses are at their side. "All are employees of Mobisanté, underlines Doctor Élodie Repole, general practitioner in Saint-Étienne-du-Valdonnez and president of the association at the origin of this project.For the first year, the schedule is set. If other doctors join us, we will be able, in 2025, to serve other municipalities." 

"For an emergency, why not"

For this first stop in Châteauneuf-de-Randon, after a very first outing to Serverette on Tuesday March 5, eight patients made an appointment. The small team of Mobisanté 48 is waiting for others who would come spontaneously. In the village, the vehicle is clearly visible and causes the inhabitants to react. The latter, if they understand that this device will not solve all their problems, welcome it with enthusiasm. "I'm going to see Doctor Marie-Jeanne Roux, in Badaroux(i.e. 23 km of road, Editor's note), confides Roseline Valantin, the manager of Oustalet, the town's tobacco bar. In case of emergency emergency, it can be practical. For a flu or a cold, why not."

The Mobisanté will return in a month to Place Du-Guesclin, on the second Tuesday in April. First, he will go to Massegros, La Bastide-Puylaurent and again to Serverette.

Bruno Durand, mayor of Châteauneuf-de-Randon: “The situation is dramatic”

It's been a year and a half since your town has had a doctor…

The old one stayed four or five months before leaving for Grandrieu… I have been fighting to find a doctor for years. A recruitment firm works for us. A few months ago, we had contact with a Tunisian doctor, but he didn't speak French well enough. 

How do you assess the situation for your constituents ?

The situation is dramatic. Even the pharmacy has closed. However, we have everything you need: a medical office, a nursing home, a specialized reception center, a nursing home… There is a potential patient base of 1,000 people.

To attract a general practitioner, you even installed a sign "seeking doctor" at the entrance to the town with the telephone number of the town hall…

I tell myself that if a doctor passes through Châteauneuf and finds the village pretty, he might want to settle there. We'll try our luck.

What would be the advantages of settling in Châteauneuf ?

The medical office, managed by the Randon-Margeride community of communes, would be free for six months. With the Rural Revitalization Zone (ZRR), there is also a five-year tax exemption.

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