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Originally Answered: How did the spread of the coronavirus spike so suddenly in Italy?
The coronavirus has probably been in Italy and Europe for a long time, hidden by normal seasonal flu.
Italy immediately closed flights to and from China, placed termal scannings in airports, invented and used a system that made it possible to test the presence of the coronavirus in a few hours and did thousands of tests a day on people with suspicious stories. It followed all security protocols with extreme rigidity and also had diplomatic problems with China for this reason.
The measures adopted by Italy have been stricter than most of the countries in the world, this makes me think that the virus was probably in Europe even before the world health emergency in January started.
The discovery of such a widespread contagion is due to the poor health of an extremely sporty and active young man, the patient one, with a friend who had recently been to China, which has alarmed doctors. Since then tests have also been launched on patients who weren’t considered suspicious and on their asymptomatic family members and friends, thus discovering how the virus was widespread among people in a lot of places. If that very healthy man hadn’t become seriously ill, the doctors would have continued to mistake the symptoms of the coronavirus for normal flu, since almost all of the infected have never been in contact with China or Chinese people.
The coronavirus doesn’t give problematic symptoms in +80% of cases so there are probably hundreds of thousands of infected in Europe and no one has ever noticed it since no tests are performed even on all those who have fever and sore throat, but only on those who have severe breathing problems and have contact with China.
The situation in Italy will certainly push the other European countries to have tighter protocols and to test even non-suspect cases, and at that point it will probably be discovered that the spread of the infection is similar to that of Italy.
I don’t think we’ll ever find the mysterious “patient zero”. He is probably an asymptomatic Italian who has been on vacation in Switzerland and has dined with an English couple who came from Thailand traveling on a plane with a group of South Korean managers returning from Hong Kong, where they had danced in a club run by Chinese people by Wuhan. Or something similar.
Right now it seems that most of the infected in Italy are asymptomatic or have a mild form of the disease, so I hope that we will overcome this crisis without too many victims … I live a few kilometers from the infected area and we are living in semi-quarantine, for now every person hospitalized in my town is connected to patient one, we hope that the situation will not change. Meanwhile, my colleagues and I are on a compulsory “vacation” for a couple of weeks and I hope this will protect us and help us overcome this crisis.
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