Coronavirus, war of numbers in Lombardy, Cartabellotta: “We objectives, here’s what does not return in the data of the Region”


Nino Cartabellotta is the president of the Gimbe Foundation and in these days he is at the center of a hard clash with the Lombardy Region on the reliability of the data that are communicated daily by Pirellone on Covid positive patients.Professor, you spoke of “magheggi”, Fontana has threatened lawsuits. What is happening?
“The Gimbe Foundation is an independent body that for ten years has been monitoring all the activities of the National Health System, evaluating the regional differences in the quality of services, tickets, health mobility, as well as public funding, essential levels of assistance, waste and more. total independence, Lombardy was on the podium when it deserved it. But if we now note that there are critical issues, our objectivity as a third party does not allow us to conceal them “.


Coronavirus, the accusation against Lombardy: “Data adjusted to avoid new closures”

What are the problems?
“First of all, the number of those discharged and healed. Compared to other regions, Lombardy puts everyone in a single container. There are people who are discharged from the hospital, but are not healed and should go to home isolation. However, they end up in the same green box. He will understand that if I put the discharged, still “open”, with “closed” cases in the same container, the epidemiological picture is distorted “.

in reproduction ….

Is this what you call magheggio?
“This in the language of research is called” gaming “, an operation not necessarily voluntary or fraudulent: but the result is that it emphasizes positive data and underestimates negative data”.


Why is it so important today?
“Because Lombardy, having counted over 55% of the healed in some moments, inevitably influenced the national figure. When I listened to the Civil Protection that said” let’s start with the good news: today 3 thousand recovered, half of whom are in Lombardy “, of the 1,500 we couldn’t know if they were people who were healed or simply discharged without news of their healing status. With the virus still circulating, putting these numbers together is very risky. ”

But does the question only concern the data or also the operational decisions that have been made on the treatment of these positives discharged from hospitals? The positives discharged in theory should remain isolated until they negate.
“We limit ourselves to monitoring the data, because it is not possible to verify the decisions. The principle is that according to the indications of the Ministry, the definition of clinical or virological healing does not lend itself to interpretation. The discharges communicated by Lombardy are not necessarily cured, but they always end up in the green column influencing the national cure rate. In addition, by increasing the number of people healed, the Rt index is also reduced, which takes into account the population susceptible to the virus and closed cases, ie the dead and, in fact, the cured “.

in reproduction ….

You also mentioned an underestimated percentage of positive swabs. Explain it better.
“The percentage of daily positives is calculated on the basis of all the swabs carried out, including the control swabs, or the famous double swab that is made to ensure that the patient has become negative. However, the correct calculation must be made only on the diagnostic swabs , or those used to identify new cases. Taking into account that in Lombardy about half of the swabs are controls, the count is quickly made. The percentage of positive swabs is halved “.

He also claims that there is a problem of delay in data communication. What do you mean?
“They are the asterisks that we see in the infographics of the Lombardy Region, data on the positive and the dead that are communicated with delays even weekly, altering the Rt index and other parameters, because the evaluation is made on incomplete data. But the real” original sin “is the lack of public availability of complete data.”

Aren’t infographics enough?
“Absolutely not. Numerous regions make available on their institutional sites all the detailed data in open format. Why does Lombardy not do it? Why does it communicate little and, moreover, partial data? I asked a little while ago directly to the Regional Welfare Councilor Gallera to make all this data available. ”

Fontana says that the real ones send them to the Higher Institute of Health and that they validate them.
“I do not know that the Institute certifies the validity of the data. It aggregates them on a common platform and analyzes them, but the responsibility for the quality and timeliness of the data lies with the Regions”.

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