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Italy’s Medical Caregivers Suffering High Toll of COVID-19 Infections

April 7, 2020 (EIRNS)—More than 10,000 Italian medical caregivers have become infected by novel coronavirus and 94 medical doctors have died as of April 7. This incredibly high toll results from the caregivers’ unpreparedness in the first phase of the pandemic, when they thought they were dealing with simple pneumonia, but then also the lack of adequate protection afterwards.

Many among the victims are general practitioners, who are still today working without adequate protection. The problems seem not to be so much the lack protective equipment, but the bureaucratic cost-effective stupidity. Silvestro Scotti, the secretary general of the Federation of General Practitioners (FIMMG) issued a strong statement on April 4, exposing the fact that money allocated for protection kits for family doctors has been blocked by the General Accounting Department, because the amendment providing for the money was not covered by the 2020 budget. “Apparently, the Accounting Department ... gave its contrary opinion because there was no technical report aimed at assessing the expenses” produced by the amendment, Scotti said. “I wonder how much the life of a doctor or these local actors is worth to the state.”

This is one among the reasons the government fears legal consequences for its decisions and omissions during the pandemic crisis. Other issues include the failure to implement containment in the hotbeds in Bergamo province. To cover its ass, the ruling Democratic Party (PD) has drafted a bill that introduces not only for medical personnel during the emergency, but also for administrators.

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