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Ireland can learn from Italy – there’s no panic here as people are kept in the know

Miriam O'Callaghan


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Prepared: Medical personnel in the pre-triage medical tent at Cremona hospital, northern Italy. Photo: MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP via Getty Images

Prepared: Medical personnel in the pre-triage medical tent at Cremona hospital, northern Italy. Photo: MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP via Getty Images

AFP via Getty Images

Prepared: Medical personnel in the pre-triage medical tent at Cremona hospital, northern Italy. Photo: MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP via Getty Images

I'm stuck in Italy with 3,090 confirmed cases of coronavirus, 107 dead, 276 recovered. Stuck? Lucky you, they say. But no. An enforced absence when there are work deadlines to be met, cats to be minded, mouths to be fed is not ideal.

Also, virus fear is creeping along the peninsula. The nonchalance is gone, along with thousands of American students hauled back by their colleges across the Atlantic.

The streets are eerie, hotels deserted, galleries abandoned.