Former head of the Italian Ministry of Health spoke about the threat of COVID-19 in the south of the country

Hospitals in southern Italy will lack specialists and equipment to treat the infected if the new coronavirus is widely spread in these regions, former head of the Italian Ministry of Health Girolamo Circhia told.

Former head of the Italian Ministry of Health spoke about the threat of COVID-19 in the south of the country

Italy ranks first in Europe in terms of coronavirus spread, currently more than 101 thousand cases of infection have been recorded on the Apennines, the number of victims has exceeded 11.5 thousand people. The outbreak is mainly in the north of the country: the number of cases south of the metropolitan area of Lazio, according to the Ministry of Health, is only 6.5% of all cases in the country.

According to the former minister, if there is an influx of patients in facilities in southern Italy, many of them will be unable to take care of patients.

“This backwardness is caused by a criminal cost-cutting policy, which means that the southern health system… continues to be so – without investment, without staff, without training, without equipment”, –  said Circhia, who led the Ministry of Health in 2003 during the fight against the outbreak of coronavirus SARS, a SARS agent.

The agency’s interlocutor also urged not to be deceived by reports of antimalarial (chloroquine) trials in the fight against coronavirus.

“I think you can’t draw conclusions without information. There are assumptions that some drugs can improve the situation, but these assumptions are based on isolated cases… Testing requires a certain method and time”, – he said, adding that such testing, even at the fastest pace, would take at least 6-8 months.

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