Epicenter of the first wave pandemic, what explains Italy’s current success in controlling Covid-19? – Observer

“People were very scared in March and April and it has an effect on behavior in the short term, but it is not known how long it will last,” said Guendalina Graffigna, professor of psychology at the Catholic University of Milan. Street newspaper. “We are a Mediterranean country and we often act on the basis of our emotions, more than in other countries,” he added. For this reason, the same newspaper notes, the habit of wearing a mask in public (common for decades in several Asian countries) has become more established in Italian society than in other European countries. Anti-mask protests, for example, were less frequent in Rome than in other western cities.

Along with the implementation of rigorous and timely measures, experts highlight lessons learned from the Italian public health system in the first phase of the pandemic, which enabled the country to put in place effective screening and screening procedures. population test. “Every time there is a positive test, we test everyone who may have come into contact with it. The real problem with this epidemic is the symptomless cases. If we do not intercept them, we do not get out, “said Andrea Crisanti in the same press releases to the Financial Times. According to Italian authorities, more than two-thirds of Italians diagnosed with the disease have not been identified as showing symptoms, but through the screening system set up in the country – including through the app. mobile “Immune”.

“By quickly identifying new positives, with the help of health services, we intercept new outbreaks by isolating all close contacts,” Raffaele Donini, public health consultant for the Emilia-Romagna region, told the Telegraph. With regard also to the isolation practices aimed at blocking new homes, the Italian authorities have not let their guard down. While France has reduced the quarantine period to seven days and Spain to ten (under certain circumstances), Italy maintains the rule that the quarantine is 14 days.

Data compiled by the Our World in Data platform shows that Italy is one of the countries with the lowest percentage of positive tests. While 10.5% of tests carried out in Spain and 5.8% of those carried out in France give a positive result, in Italy only 2.8% of tests are positive. This indicator confirms that the spread of the virus is considerably less in Italy than in Spain and France. The lower the percentage of tests with a positive result, the more comprehensive the test (not limited to those with symptoms) and the less likely it is that positive cases will escape the test grid. One of the criteria used by the World Health Organization to recommend the reopening of economic activity is precisely the percentage of positive tests, which must be less than 5%.

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