AUSTIN, Texas — My cousin, Sabrina Bergamo, lives in Revò, Italy, about 20 miles north of Trento.
The entire country is on lockdown as more people die from the coronavirus. On Saturday, Italian officials reported 793 deaths, the most for a single day during this pandemic. Already 4,825 people have died and there are more than 53,000 confirmed cases, according to Johns Hopkins University.
“Life has been crazy and insane since the lockdowns. So many people are getting infected and so many people are dying every day,” Bergamo said via WhatsApp on Saturday. “We've been staying home. People are working from home, and we are not supposed to leave the house unless we really have to.”
Bergamo and her husband, Yuri, also take care of her parents. Sabrina can work from home, with occasional trips to the office. Yuri still must go to the office, but his company has taken measures to separate how closely employees sit to each other.
Grocery stores are allowing one person per family to go to shopping.
“Most of the people are following the rules here, but some, they don't. So, the police and military service are now checking on people to make them respect the rules,” Bergamo said.
Residents were given a form they must present if stopped by authorities outside their home. They are also only allowed to go for a walk and get fresh air within a certain radius of home.
Italy has the second highest number of coronavirus cases in the world, but the most deaths of any country. Health care workers are reportedly struggling to keep up with the number of cases.
“If you want to avoid the spreading of the virus, you better stay home and, unfortunately, you're not supposed to see any friends or family,” Bergamo said. “And I know that's a sacrifice, but it's a sacrifice to keep you healthy and to keep your family and the community healthy.”
When the number of cases started increasing, Bergamo said people were panic buying as we’ve seen at stores across the U.S.
The government guaranteed residents that grocers and pharmacies would remain open during the health crisis, she said.
The Bergamos are doing everything possible to stay healthy, including the basic regular handwashing.
“You don't know if you are positive to the virus because it takes from four to 20 days before you can get any symptoms. So you never know. Even if you feel like you're healthy and you're doing well, you never know if you're positive,” she said. “You have to be very respectful to yourself, of course, and to the others.”
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