Death toll from coronavirus in Italy is likely to be much higher than the current 15,000
Kanako Itamae and Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
The death toll from coronavirus (Covid-19) in Italy is currently over 15,000 people. However, this shocking figure – that will continue to increase – is likely to be much higher. This is based on many people passing away at home and in nursing homes without ever being tested for coronavirus.
In the Lombardy region, the worse hit area in Italy, death and utter devastation is the current daily reality. Similarly, the horrendous suffering in Lombardy is gradually becoming more entrenched in other parts of the country.
Reuters reports, “A study by local newspaper L’Eco di Bergamo and research consultant InTwig, using data provided by local municipalities, estimates that 5,400 people died in the Bergamo province during the month of March, or six times more than a year ago.”
The official figure of deaths from coronavirus is just below half of the suspected figure of 4,500 in the Bergamo province. Hence, with so many dying in nursing homes and at home – and outside the number of known deaths – then the death toll is much higher than the current official figure.
Giorgio Gori, the Mayor of Bergamo, uttered, “Despite our best efforts, it’s not possible to take everyone to hospital and sometimes families prefer to keep the sick at home out of fear they may not have another chance to say goodbye.”
In towns like Coccaglio and Lodi – and replicated in too many other places – none of the sixty-two known deaths in two nursing homes were tested for coronavirus. Likewise, people dying at home are soon buried after being collected by authorities without ever being tested. Therefore, the figure must be much higher.
One can only imagine the loneliness of so many dying alone. Equally, for staff in nursing homes that can only watch on helplessly, it must be a nightmare. The psychological impact on elderly people witnessing and knowing death is spreading also must be extremely stressful. Hence, the end of life for so many is harrowing.
Overall, when the coronavirus crisis is finally contained in Italy then gradually the real number of known deaths will be clarified. Then grieving, utter shock, bewilderment, and other emotions will flow from the living because they had no chance to say goodbye!
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