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Meet the Italians battling Covid-19 in Los Angeles

The #Italiandigitaltownhall series of online meetings, dedicated to Italian scientists and doctors engaged in the front line of the fight against Coronavirus in the United States, arrives in South California.

In the wake of the success of the previous events, yesterday’s new meeting was opened by the Italian Ambassador Armando Varricchio, in the presence of the Consul-General in Los Angeles, Silvia Chiave. In Southern California, the extent of the Covid-19 contagion is relatively limited thanks to the strict lockdown measures, which are recently being eased, with the economy partially reopening.

The panelists Dr. Emanuela Bonfoco (Emergency and General Medicine, UCLA), Prof. Federica Raia (Professor of Education, Information and Medicine, UCLA), Prof. Alessandro Sette (Immunologist at the La Jolla Institute of Immunology in San Diego and member of ISSNAF) and Alberto Collazzoni (Psychologist at the Renewed Freedom Center) provided an overview of crisis management in the large metropolitan areas of Los Angeles and San Diego. The conversation, moderated by RAI journalist and founder of the Ibiscus Media company Valentina Martelli, highlighted the strengths and weaknesses of the response to the crisis in Southern California, offering the many online participants a clear and accurate picture to help separate the facts from the misleading information around the virus.

Dr. Bonfoco recalled the impact of Covid-19 on the diagnosis and management of access to hospital facilities and stressed the importance of telemedicine in the Covid-19 emergency, while Prof. Collazzoni addressed the psychological consequences of the crisis. Prof. Raia illustrated the consequences on learning and communication processes in medical practices and social interactions. Finally, Prof. Sette gave an overview of the studies conducted on the immune response to the virus and the search for a vaccine.

Wrapping up the conversation, Ambassador Varricchio highlighted how “on the West Coast too the emergency response and search for a vaccine and a cure against Covid-19 have been able to benefit from the authoritative contributions of many Italian scientists, researchers and doctors. Their expertise has represented and continues to represent a source of clear and reliable information for all residents, Italian and non-Italian alike, in Southern California”.

The conversation, streamed live on the Facebook channel of the Consulate-General in Los Angeles, was followed by over 180 people.

The #italiandigitaltownhall series will come to a close on June 4th with an event in San Francisco.


Click here to view the New York meeting of 15 May:

Click here to view the Boston meeting of 19 May:

Click here to view the Houston meeting of 22 May:

Click here to view yesterday’s meeting in Los Angeles: