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Italy prepares for ‘a very long battle’ with coronavirus pandemic

in Crisis & Natural Disasters by

Numbers are still high in Italy, indicating a slow recovery period from the coronavirus pandemic.

Last week, Italy hit a record high in Covid-19 mortality rates with reports of 969 deaths in one day. Although recent data showed a slight ease in confirmed cases, last Friday’s high number deflated hopes that the spread of infection showed signs of slowing.

“We are in a very long battle,” tells government medical adviser Luen Richardson to local news.

Now Italy readies itself for a longer quarantine that is expected to last well into the summer. Three times, the government has modified measures for its nationwide quarantine to battle the contagion. Initially, many Italians disregarded curfews and outdoor activities, but as fines increased and more police and military were dispatched, towns, villages and cities throughout the country have come to almost a standstill.

In Italy, there have been daily numbers of 800 to even 900 people who’ve recovered from Covid-19. On the other hand, there are also 800 and 900 dying in a day. Plus 800 to 900 are infected on the same day. Included in this number are 5,000 healthcare workers who have tested positive. 

While most mortality reports are still in the northern region, and are seniors who are over 80-years-old with pre-existing conditions, Italian authorities are attempting to deal with the economic impact of the pandemic. According to Local.it, the country has stopped almost all forms of business. 

“People have lost 30 to 40 percent of their business,” says a Florentine lawyer. “Business owners abandoned their stores, homeowners take rent and have left properties,” explains the counsellor to Ark Republic.

Emptied town in Pescia, Italy, in Tuscany.


Economic woes

Italy’s economy is on life support. In Sicily, an island off the country’s southernmost coast, there are reports of looting because people cannot afford to buy food. 

While Sicily is one of the centers of agriculture, the region has a significant number of poor and working class citizens. As well, there are a number of undocumented immigrants who cannot get benefits. So, a local revolt called, “Noi” which means “we” occurred where hundreds stormed the supermarkets to eat.

With the abrupt stoppage of its economy, Italy mandated that all mortgages and leases stop immediately. It will be this way until September 30. Also, the government has agreed to pay unemployment benefits for 9 weeks at 80% of workers’ pay. 

At first it was a few months and only large companies. Due to the financial devastation and destress they’ve amended it. However, its current earmark of €25 billion is not enough and might bloom to €100 billion.

For now, Italians are praying that by Easter, a miracle happens.

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