How the UK failed to listen to Italian doctors' warnings about coronavirus

Britain may end up the worst-hit country in Europe, why did leaders not learn from the first holder of that title? Federica Marsi speaks to doctors who told The Independent last month drastic action was needed

Saturday 02 May 2020 19:58 BST
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Italy's intensive care units were soon overwhelmed as the pandemic struck
Italy's intensive care units were soon overwhelmed as the pandemic struck (EPA)

As a new coronavirus swept the globe like a tsunami, each country along its unforgiving path knew what could happen.

Despite seeing a few cases in China quickly escalate to a full-blown epidemic, in Italy some politicians urged people not to change their habits. By the time Covid-19 hit Britain, the country had been watched events unfold in Europe, yet it opted for a half-hearted lockdown and then marvelled at the speed at which beds were filling up in the capital.

“When it touches you personally, that’s when you change your behaviour,” Giovanni Carrosio, a sociology lecturer at the University of Trieste tells The Independent.

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