Monsieur Poupart is a doctor. He does not work for Madame Aubain exactly, except that he is the doctor.
Virginia occupied her thoughts solely, for the shock she had sustained gave her a nervous affection, and the physician, M. Poupart, prescribed the salt-water bathing at Trouville. (ch 2)
Virginia’s trip to the doctor is a result of the fact that the “bull had driven Felicite up against a fence” (ch 2). Felicite is a faithful and cheap servant. She was injured by the bull when it tried to attack the family and she intervened, sacrificing herself for the family.
There are not many people in Trouville, and it is kind of out of the way place. The family stays there as if vacationing because Poupart has prescribed a sea-side treatment, and they remain there for several weeks.