Italy remains among the countries in the world to have diagnosed the greatest number of new coronavirus cases outside China, where the epidemic has developed. From schools to sports, the government is trying to deal with the emergency with ad hoc measures. (THE UPDATES – THE SPECIAL – THE GREEN NUMBERS OF THE REGIONS – THE DIFFUSION IN AN ANIMATED MAP)
The situation in Italy
In our country there are currently 11 deaths due to the new coronavirus, but in all cases it concerns elderly people, with previous pathologies and in “serious health conditions”, as confirmed by Walter Ricciardi of the World Health Organization. For this reason, the Higher Institute of Health was called into question to ascertain the deaths: he will clarify what role Sars-CoV-2 played in the death of these people. In the meantime, the infected in Italy have exceeded 320 and are scattered in about twenty provinces. The outbreaks remain those of Lodigiano, in Lombardy, and Vo ‘(Padua), in Veneto, but on the day of 25 February the first cases were also registered in Liguria, Tuscany and in the south, in Sicily.
The expert opinion
Ricciardi, WHO, intervened to bring the phenomenon back to the correct size. Out of 100 people who get sick – explained the expert – 80 recover spontaneously and 15 have serious but manageable problems in the healthcare environment. Only 5% are very serious, of which 3% die. “We must reduce this great alarm, which is right, not to be underestimated, but the disease must be put in the right terms,” said Ricciardi. The knot of the 3% mortality rate recorded in Italy was also addressed by the director of the infectious diseases department of the Higher Institute of Health, Giovanni Rezza, according to which the figure is explainable with the average advanced age of the Italian population. “The elderly are more fragile. The only way to protect them is to limit the outbreaks as it is being done, “said Rezza.
In the meantime, to reduce the chances of contagion, schools have been closed in several Regions. In Lombardy, Piedmont, Veneto, Emilia Romagna, Friuli Venezia Giulia, Trentino Alto Adige and Liguria, educational services for children and schools of all levels, as well as professional courses, masters and the universities. The Marches have arranged for the closure of the schools until March 4, while the same request made by Calabria for the moment has not been accepted. Since, however, at the municipal level, the mayors can issue closing ordinances for the institutes, students also remain at home in some municipalities in the south. School trips are also suspended until March 15 by the will of the Ministry of Education.
Tomorrow, February 26, the decree law on coronavirus will arrive in the Chamber. Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte also announced “an ordinance to standardize behavior in all regions” outside the “red areas” and said he was convinced that “Italy will come out head-on” from the crisis. However, tensions developed between him and the Lombard authorities during the day, after Conte said that at the origin of the Lombard outbreak there would be the handling of the case not in line with the protocols by the Codogno hospital – where the first Italian infection was registered – inviting local authorities to stop it with “unjustified autonomous initiatives” and fearing the possibility of intervening with “measures that reduce the governors’ prerogatives”. The exit caused the reaction of the president of Lombardy, Attilio Fontana (“inadmissible idea”), and his councilor for health, Giulio Gallera (“Declaration unacceptable by an ignorant person”). In the evening the clarification and the return of the clash.
The games behind closed doors
The epidemic also affects sport. The emergency decree foresees that the Serie A matches scheduled in the stadiums of the 5 regions most affected by the contagions are played behind closed doors: Lombardy, Veneto, Piedmont, Emilia-Romagna and Friuli Venezia Giulia. These include Udinese-Fiorentina, Milan-Genoa, Parma-Spal, Sassuolo-Brescia and the “derby d ‘Italia”, Juventus-Inter, as well as the Europa League game Inter-Ludogorets.
Travel to Italy suspended
Given the explosion of contagion cases in Italy, there are several countries in the world that are restricting entry to Italians or who advise against travel to our country. The most drastic measures have been taken by Kuwait, which has decided to stop flights to and from Italy, Jordan and the Seychelles, which have banned those arriving from the peninsula, and from Samoa, which has decided that those arriving from Italy enter only after quarantine and certificate. Australia is considering whether or not to impose a ban on entry to our compatriots while the United States has prevented its military personnel from traveling to areas affected by the coronavirus in Italy. Instead, the borders of the countries bordering Italy remain open and nobody – clarified the European Union – asked to suspend Schengen, or the treaty governing free movement within the EU.