Rome 7 march 2020, 3.43pm.
Today after lunch with a friend and colleague, we decided to cook and stay home in the evening to play it safe and avoid close contact with people. We talked a lot about work and as you can imagine, about coronavirus.
Currently, this city looks empty. There is a strange vibe about.
To be a doctor is a wonderful yet, extremely difficult job. Every day we need to operate at the maximum of our energy and performance. We cannot make mistakes or at least we try to minimize them. We do our very best for our patients everyday and our only mission is help people and to save lives. It’s in our DNA.
Because of the current situation, we as doctors in Italy are busier with significantly increased pressures and workloads.
I have been receiving multiple messages from friends and patients, day and night. One good friend sent me a message saying: Hello my friend, I hope you are keeping your self safe!!! We need you, we need doctors to stay healthy for us!!!
I’m here to tell you that of course we are here for the whole community. All of us medical professionals are here for you, on the front line to help everyone. We are doing and will continue to do our very best for you. But now, we need your help too.
This virus is an invisible enemy that spreads very easily. Remember – we don’t need to panic but we do need everyone to strictly follow government and medical instructions and advice.
Medical experts are working to keep you all safe and doing their best to contain the virus and fall out. There are now over 100,000 cases worldwide, of which over 5,000 are in Italy. Numbers continue to rise and we are working around the clock to keep them as low as possible.
Doctors, nurses, paramedics, volunteers are working non-stop. COVID 19 is a nasty enemy and we must do everything we can to keep everyone safe. Especially those who are fragile, vulnerable because of chronic illness and those who are unwell for other reasons. We mustn’t forget that it’s not just COVID 19 we are dealing with but we also have patients for other medical reasons and urgent emergencies.
Italy is a wonderful country. We have the best food, approach to life, friendly and positive people, incredible monuments and attractions, we love hugs, we love socializing and being together and we love kissing each other to say hello and goodbye.
But for now – we must stay united at a physical distance (ideally at around 1.8 meters, 2 meters to be safer). This is to ensure that if someone coughs or sneezes, droplets should not land on you and infect you. And of course, please continue to wash your hands regularly and don’t touch you eyes and mouth. If you develop flu-like symptoms, pleasestay home and contact your doctor immediately.
I urge you to follow WHO instructions: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public
Let’s avoid close contact for a while. Let’s fight this COVID-19 together.
Your cooperation is the key to our success.
Thank you all for your amazing support!!! Grazie mille
Andrea Guerriero, MD