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Italy: 50-75 percent of all Coronavirus infected are asymptomatic

Italian professor of clinical immunology at the University of Florence in the Tuscany region, Sergio Romagnani, sounded the alarm on asymptomatic Covid-19 cases.

Published: March 19, 2020, 8:50 am


    “The vast majority of people infected with Covid-19, between 50 and 75 percent, are completely asymptomatic but represent a formidable source of infection,” warned Professor Romagnani, who expects a large upcoming increase in the Tuscany region where Florence is located. His warning is based on a study of 3 000 infected Italians.

    The immunologist explains that the data from the study conducted on all residents of two cities near Venice highlight two very important facts: “The proportion of infected, even asymptomatic, in the population is very high and represents the majority of all cases, and not least among the younger ones”. Therefore, isolation of asymptomatic infected people is crucial in controlling the spread of the virus and the severity of the disease.

    The immunologist pointed out that most hospitals do not send home doctors and nurses unless they develop symptoms. But in the light of the results of the study, this decision can be extremely dangerous, as hospitals are at risk of becoming infectious.

    Acccording to Romagnani, with isolation the total number of patients decreased from 88 to 7, more than ten times less, within 7-10 days. Isolation of the infected (symptomatic or non-symptomatic) could not only protect other people from infection, but also seemed to protect against the serious progression of the disease in infected patients, as 60 percent of the isolated Covid-19 patients “only” needed to be cared for in average 8 days.

    Previous studies have shown that the average day when an illness goes from mild to severe symptoms is on the 11th day. Therefore, it is of great value if infected are recovered already after just over a week.

    In total, ten people have now died in Sweden as a result of the ongoing Corona epidemic. The Public Health Authority states that 21 people are cared for in intensive care and that 1 279 have been infected so far. However, the figure for the number of infected persons is a clear understatement since last week they stopped testing suspected infected persons who did not seek help in hospitals. Sweden has suffered two more deaths as a result of the Coronavirus on Wednesday.

    Sweden’s attitude of letting Covid-19 spread freely in society instead of urging citizens to self-isolate and shut down public services, could possibly have catastrophic consequences.

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