François Braun, a 60-year-old doctor, succeeds Brigitte Bourguignon as French Minister of Health after the French government announced the names of new ministers in Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne’s executive on Monday (July 4th).
The former Bourguignon minister only remained in office for two months, her defeat in the legislative elections having forced her to resign.
Center-right MP Philippe Juvin (Les Républicains) said he was “approached” by the government but said he had “refused” the post of Minister of Health, according to an article in the newspaper Le Figaro.
In an interview with EURACTIV on June 12, Juvin criticized the handling of the COVID crisis by French President Emmanuel Macron and member states.
Francois Braun’s name is no stranger to government, having previously worked with Macron during his presidential campaign to shape his health agenda.
On May 31, he was entrusted by Macron with a one-month “flash mission” to put in place the first measures to try to support the health sector as much as possible as the summer approaches. tense ad.
The 41 conclusions of the mission were made public last Friday. Borne announced that it had retained “all the proposals” drawn up by Braun.
Among the flagship measures, that devoted to informing the population with a national campaign on the proper use of emergency services, aimed at relieving congestion in emergencies.
Braun, former head of the emergency medical aid services of Moselle and Metz-Thionville, was also president of the union of professionals of emergency medicine structures Samu-Urgences de France (SUdF).
On May 20, the SUdF sounded the alarm: 120 emergency services had to close or reduce their capacity in France.
However, Braun’s appointment has already caused controversy.
“For us, this appointment is a real provocation,” said Christophe Prudhomme, emergency doctor and spokesperson for the Association of Emergency Physicians of France (AMUF), on the franceinfo television channel in reaction to the news.
According to him, Braun chose “questions of power and the support of a policy of degradation of public service”.
“There is a real political problem today and I think there will be a revolt in the world of health and in the population in the face of the worrying policy advocated by Braun”, he added.
The DG of the Red Cross new Minister of Solidarity
Another new face joined the Ministry of Health this morning.
The Director General of the French Red Cross, Jean Christophe Combe, was appointed Minister of Solidarity, Autonomy and the Disabled this morning, replacing Damien Abad, previously accused of rape and sexual assault.
Combe joined the Red Cross in 2011 and had been its director general since 2017. He was first a technical adviser to the Senate for the Union Centriste group, then director of cabinet for deputy Bruno Bourg-Broc in 2007 and director of cabinet of the Republican Mayors of Saint-Germain-en-Laye in 2009.
Geneviève Darrieussecq will assist him in his duties in his newly appointed role as Minister Delegate for People with Disabilities.
The new Ministry of Health already has several files on the table, starting with the organization of the “big consultation” on access to care, promised by Emmanuel Macron during his campaign.
Braun will also have to deal with the crisis that the public hospital sector in France has been facing for months, which includes a lack of medical staff and poor working conditions.
In addition to this, the management of the COVID crisis is also on the agenda, while the epidemic is on the rise in France. Last Friday, 125,066 people were infected in 24 hours, an increase of 58% compared to the previous seven days.
[Edited by Gerardo Fortuna/Nathalie Weatherald]