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The fatal mistakes of the ‘Italian model’

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Interview. 'There was a lack of courage and determination to close down everything, immediately.' We spoke with Nino Cartabellotta, who studies the Italian healthcare system and has identified several lessons from the past weeks.

written by Andrea Capocci

Topic Italy

April 7, 2020

Nino Cartabellotta is the president of the GIMBE Foundation (“Italian Group for Evidence-Based Medicine”). GIMBE has been studying and defending the Italian universal healthcare system for years, without hiding its inefficiencies. They annually produce a “Report on the sustainability of the National Health System,” full of data and analysis.

The management of the epidemic has not escaped their scrutiny. The government is flaunting the “Italy model,” which they say is being imitated all around the world, but Cartabellotta’s judgment is more nuanced: “Obviously, the ‘Italy model’ has both bright spots and darker ones, from which everyone should learn.”

What errors have been committed?

The overall error was made in the first weeks: wait-and-see policies and measures that were following the numbers known on that day, without taking into account that these were the result of actions, interventions and behaviors implemented, or not implemented, two to three........

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