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Italy sees the light at the end of the tunnel? For the economist, “not yet”

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The downward trend in the number of people infected with coronavirus in recent days in Italy bodes well, but the light at the end of the tunnel is still not seen. This is convinced by the economist Lorenzo Codogno, visiting professor in practice at the London School of Economics and former chief economist of the MEF, who in his last analysis on the impacts of Covid – 19 explains how “the data available for Italy does not yet clearly suggest a turning point in the epidemiological curve. So – he observes – the restrictive measures will continue for several weeks and the human and economic costs could be higher than previously envisaged “.

Reduced mobility, reasons Codogno , “should have led to a significant drop in infections which has not yet happened. Only the growth rate is in some way falling, but the number of recorded cases is still growing. Furthermore, if it is true that the numbers are marginally slowing down in the main outbreaks (Milan, Bergamo for example), however there are small outbreaks in which the infection is expanding. I am thinking in particular of the strong increase of cases in Southern Italy, which is a cause for great concern. Furthermore, the death toll continues to grow. ” The flattening of the contagion curve remains “the main political objective”.

The expert: our model even significantly worse

The model, continues the expert, “is still significantly worse than Hubei 36 days ago (about the same inhabitants of Italy, that is 60 millions) and the inflection point in Italy is

still very uncertain or absent. Intensive care people have dropped from around 10% in early March to around 6.3% today. There is an ongoing reallocation of patients in the country and many new ICU beds are now operational. However, in some areas the intensive care units are saturated, or are about to become saturated. “The flattening of the curve to avoid overloading the health system” remains the greatest challenge “for the country. The government took a step forward on Sunday with the announcement of a further tightening of the measures that provides for the closure of all non-essential activities: “No matter how large and effective the political initiative is to counter Covid's economic impact – 19, the financial markets now expect a clear turn in contagion (obviously, not only in Italy). Therefore, the data on Covid – 19 are better than any indicator to track the development of the economic trend “.

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