Tag Archives: Mario Draghi

Italy fears that the masses have infiltrated the vaccination campaign – POLITICO | Instant News


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ROME – Italian mafias divert vaccines from those who need them most, lawmakers fear.

With Italy struggling to run a shaky vaccination campaign, parliamentary anti-mafia commissions are investigating whether crime syndicates divert vaccines to their friends at the expense of the elderly and vulnerable, especially in the south where they often exercise control over health authorities. .

Italy’s rise in COVID-19 deaths, due to the dramatically slowing death rate in neighboring countries, has led some people, including Prime Minister Mario Draghi, to blame younger people for jumping queues for vaccinations.

At press time conference on Thursday evening, Draghi said: “With what conscience does one jump through the queue, knowing that it makes other people vulnerable, who are over 65 years of age or vulnerable, and who is at real risk of death?”

Institute of International Political Studies (ISPI) think tank estimates that 8,000 lives in Italy could have been saved since January if vaccines were more focused on the elderly.

But there is a growing concern that the masses are using their powers to get people vaccinated beforehand. The number of health workers – part of the first batch of vaccines – has increased suspiciously, especially in areas such as Puglia. Administrators, communications consultants, and even builders working on health sites have been given the shot once it has been added to the priority list.

And a loose interpretation of the Ministry of Health’s guidelines allows Italy’s 20 regions, which are responsible for health care, to allocate injections to well-connected individuals and groups such as politicians, lawyers, judges and journalists. Three south area – Sicily, Calabria and Campania – have given this priority dose as much or more as that given to people over 80 years of age.

At least 1,000 queue jumper suspects are being investigated by various police forces and prosecutors in Italy, including 150 people Palermo alone. Mayor of Corleone in Sicily resign after he was accused of abusing his position to get vaccines for himself and his board members.

This prompted the anti-mafia parliamentary commission to demand the names of those vaccinated. Mario Giarrusso, a member of the commission and a longtime anti-mafia campaigner, told POLITICO that it had compiled a list of names from several southern regions with suspicious numbers.

He said: “The people being vaccinated fall outside the priority category defined by the government, especially in some areas where there is a high mafia density, and we suspect that the mafia regulates vaccinations.”

In areas like Calabria, authority is often under the control of the central government because of mafia infiltration, said Giarrusso.

But even in areas where the mafia’s influence has been far less, vaccine rollouts have failed to prioritize older citizens, experts say.

Military members and prisoners have been given priority status, as well as more than 1 million school and university workers, although most teaching has been transferred to the internet.

According to Matteo Villa, a researcher at the ISPI think tank, the reason for a broader failure in government strategy is a lack of clear guidelines.

Like other countries, Italy prioritizes those over 80 years of age, care homeworkers and health care workers. But under pressure to become a leader in the vaccination race, Italy is giving health workers injections at a much faster rate than those over their 80s. “All health workers are vaccinated at the end of January. But it is done at the expense of the elderly,” said Villa.

At the end of January, seven in 10 vaccines were given to children under 60 years of age. And as of March 31, Italy is way behind the EU’s goal of 80 per cent of people over 80 having received at least one dose.

Even now, more children under 60 have been vaccinated than those over 80, according to officials numbers.

Draghi on Thursday complained that the number of health workers was growing and ordered focus be given to the elderly.

“We need to vaccinate as a priority for everyone over the age of 70,” he said.

Draghi has appointed Francesco Figliuolo, a military general and logistics expert, to get the vaccine back on track. But with Italy recording 718 coronavirus deaths on Friday, the biggest daily increase since December, it continues to count the cost of life.

Giarrusso, the anti-mafia senator, vows to root out the mafia. “We need to verify who has passed the queue. These people take the vaccine from those whose lives are at risk. “

This article is a part of POLITICOPremium policy service: Health Care Pro. From drug pricing, EMA, vaccines, pharmaceuticals and more, our specialist journalists continue to provide you with topics that drive the health care policy agenda. Email [email protected] for a free trial.

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Italy’s debate over allegations of Chinese ‘genocide’ is putting pressure on the Draghi – POLITICO coalition | Instant News


The debate in Italy over whether to label China’s treatment of its Uyghur Muslim minority as “genocide” threatens to break Rome’s ruling coalition as new Prime Minister Mario Draghi is trying to define his Chinese policy.

Italian parliamentarians can be continue used the label “genocide” for Beijing’s policies against Uyghurs in Xinjiang, but Draghi’s government opposed the designation, which was put forward in a resolution sponsored by the far-right League, part of the ruling coalition. Others in the government also prefer to weigh words carefully and avoid diplomatic clashes.

The foreign affairs committee of Italy’s lower house of parliament will vote on Wednesday resolution condemned the human rights violations in Xinjiang and called it “genocide”.

Paolo Formentini, the League lawmaker who proposed the resolution, acknowledged that the word “genocide” was overused by his colleagues, although the problem of abuses in Xinjiang is widely condemned.

“Basically there is a lot of worry among all the other political groups. Everyone will choose to condemn human rights violations. But when you say ‘genocide’, everyone will run the other way,” Formentini told POLITICO in an interview.

Increasing reports of abuses in Xinjiang, including forced sterilization, are helping prompt the US and Canada to designate Chinese activities in the region as “genocide”. The Dutch Parliament is the only one in Europe to take a similar stance. Unlike in Brussels and the Netherlands, where liberal and left-leaning parties are at the forefront of condemning abuses in Xinjiang, the impetus in Italy is now coming. from the right, with the League up front.

“Apart from Netherlands, no other parliament in the European Union has approved the stern criticism [that] genocide, “Formentini said.” It is imperative that Draghi in Italy does so to break away from his secondary role on the European scene and become the leader of a solid Euro-Atlantic tie, “he explained, also framing the issue in national terms of pride.

Debate emerged as prime minister still outlining his government’s policy towards Beijing. Now leading the country faced critics from Brussels and Washington on becoming the first G7 members to join China’s Belt and Road initiative in 2019, Draghi has not fully demonstrated his capabilities in China. But he has used the government’s foreign investment screening tool against a Chinese company, and that indication is not the last time.

Draghi Administration has been proposed redesigned a League resolution to remove references to a “policy of genocide” and replace it with “human rights violations,” according to two people with firsthand knowledge of the government’s proposal, which was kept secret.

The resolution also states that China’s policy in Xinjiang “falls under” the United Nations in 1948 resolution about the genocide. According to one person with knowledge of the proposal, the government wanted to change the statement to “fallible.”

The Italian foreign ministry, which proposed the changes, declined to comment.

Parliamentary debate

However, for now, Formentini has no intention of accepting the government’s suggestion. The league has not yet pulled the text, he said.

During a parliamentary debate Last week, lawmakers from other ruling parties condemned China’s policies towards Uyghurs but rejected the word “genocide.” Benedetto Della Vedova, deputy minister at the foreign ministry, for example, noted that neither the United Nations nor the international tribunals mentioned human rights abuses in the genocide of the Xinjiang region. Pino Cabras, vice president of the foreign affairs committee of the anti-establishment 5Star movement, said that international reports about Xinjiang could become US propaganda.

A resolution condemning human rights abuses in Xinjiang, even without a word of genocide, would nevertheless be “a big step forward,” according to Laura Harth of the Global Committee for the Rule of Law, a nongovernmental organization. “The diplomatic caution of the government is understandable, although we do not share it. But the reluctance of parliamentarians is not understandable,” he said.

The China debate also comes amid growing criticism in Brussels as well as in European capitals an EU-China investment agreement (known as “CAI”) that was finalized at the end of last year. According to Formentini, the EU must abandon the deal, which he views as an “insult” to the US

“There is a connection between CAI and my resolution,” he said. “If the EU depends too much on China economically, it will also be less free to defend its values.”

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Italian PM Mario Draghi Chooses Libya for First Foreign Trip, Seeking Stronger Relationships | Instant News


Photographer: Mahud Turkia / AFP / Getty Images

Mario Draghi of Italy, choosing Libya for his first overseas trip as prime minister, pledged to intensify cooperation between countries in various sectors including infrastructure, energy and health.

The prime minister, seeking to rebuild influence in the former Italian colony, told reporters after talks in Tripoli with his counterpart Abdul Hamid Mohammed Dbeibah that his visit “in itself demonstrates the importance of historic relations between the two countries.”

“This is a unique moment to rebuild ancient friendships,” said Draghi, praising Dbeibah united government which is supposed to last until the general election in December.

Oil-rich Libya has been in turmoil since a NATO-backed uprising toppled dictator Moammar Al Qaddafi in 2011, and has been torn between hostile eastern and western governments until UN-backed efforts succeeded in uniting a unified government earlier this year.

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Young professionals outperform older Italians to get vaccines | Instant News


ROME – Octogenarians in Tuscany watched in disbelief and anger as lawyers, judges, professors and other young professionals were vaccinated against COVID-19 before them, despite the government vowing to prioritize Italy’s oldest citizens. Even some of their adult children jumped in front of them.

According to one estimate, failure to administer injections to people over their 80s and in fragile health has claimed thousands of lives in Europe’s oldest-populated country and the second-highest death in the pandemic.

As the elderly were elbowed, a dozen prominent senior citizens in Tuscany issued a letter calling on the authorities, including the governor of the region, for what they said was a violation of their right to health care enshrined in the Italian Constitution.

“We asked ourselves, ‘What is the reason for this difference?'” Said signatory Enzo Cheli, a retired constitutional judge who is less than 87 years old. At the end of March, he was still not vaccinated, three months after the Italian inoculation campaign.

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“The appeal is born from the idea that mistakes are being made, violations,” Cheli said in a telephone interview from his home near Siena, noting that investigations are being carried out in Tuscany and other regions where professionals receive priority status.

Those over 80 in Tuscany have the lowest vaccination rates nationwide.

Another signatory is 85-year-old editorial cartoonist Emilio Giannelli, who has not been vaccinated, while his son, a lawyer, has been vaccinated.

Giannelli cartoons appear on the front page of the Corriere della Sera depicting a young man in a business jacket kicking an old man leaning on a stick from the vaccine trail.

In a country where many citizens have learned not to rely on an often weak national government, too much influence is exercised by lobby groups, sometimes derided as “caste”.

Prime Minister Mario Draghi has criticized the “impact of such contracts”, saying last month that “the bottom line is the need to vaccinate the most vulnerable and those over the 80s.” Its government insists that vaccinations continue according to age, with the only exceptions being school and university employees, security forces, prison and prison personnel, and those living in communal residences such as monasteries.

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According to a tally by the ISPI think tank, unrolling vaccinations for younger Italians cost 6,500 lives from mid-January to March, a period in which nearly 28,000 died.

ISPI researcher Matteo Villa said any decisions to vaccinate non-healthcare professionals at risk of infection should be limited to those aged 50 and over.

“If we give 100 vaccines to people over 90, we save 13 lives,” Villa said in a telephone interview, citing the death rate. “But it takes 100,000 vaccines for 20 to 29 years to save just one life.”

The average age of death from a pandemic in Italy is currently 81 years.

Throughout the pandemic, the oldest Italians accounted for the majority of deaths, and not just in Tuscany. Just before Draghi sounded the warning about the lobby group, journalists in the small area of ​​Molise were getting ready to get vaccinated early. In Lombardy, veterinarians are given priority. In Campania, a region including Naples, drug company salespeople are given priority status.

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Regional leaders have blamed delays in vaccine deliveries, accusing the government’s previous vaccine launches of opening the door to lobby groups.

Some areas such as Lazio, including Rome, hold their pressure. As of the end of March, nearly 64% of those aged 80 and over in Lazio had received at least one COVID-19 injection, compared to 40% in Tuscany.

Speaking of the most fragile of society, Lazio Governor Nicola Zingaretti told the newspaper Corriere della Sera: “It is true that everyone is at risk of contracting COVID, but the difference is that they are among those who, if infected, are at risk of dying more than others.”

Of Italy’s 4.4 million residents aged 80 or older, less than 29% have been vaccinated, and another 27% only had their first dose at the end of March, said the GIMBE foundation, which monitors health care in Italy.

That compares with 95% of that age group in Malta who had received at least one dose, and 85% in Finland, according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, Italy.

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In the UK, where vaccine launches begin roughly a month before the EU, most of those over 50 have received at least one dose.

The GIMBE official, Renata Gili, attributed Italy’s largely uneven performance to various organizational capabilities as well as “excess regional autonomy in the selection of priority categories for vaccination.”

Some lobby groups did not back down. The National Magistrates Association, which represents most of Italy’s more than 9,600 judges, has threatened to slow down the slug-paced justice system if they are not given priority. On Thursday, the tourism lobby demanded priority vaccines for its workers, describing them as essential to the country’s recovery.

On Friday, a top Health Ministry official, Giovanni Rezza, attempted to stop the struggle for priorities.

“There is a struggle between categories ” for vaccine priority, Rezza told a news conference when asked if supermarket employees could get special status.” We said, ‘Let’s get it over with teachers, security forces, but let’s not have categories anymore.’ We will only use age criteria. “

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The military general who was tapped last month by Draghi to destabilize Italy’s COVID-19 vaccination campaign acknowledged a widespread problem.

“Is everything going well? No, ” General Francesco Figliuolo told reporters Wednesday in Milan.

How many people in Italy receive priority vaccines is unknown. The Tuscany health commission’s office said that before Draghi withdrew from the special interest group, 10,319 lawyers, judges, courthouse clerks and personnel had received doses in the region.

Allowing lawyers and others to have quick access to vaccines is “ a problem, and everyone is angry about it, ” said Nathan Levi, an antiques dealer in Florence who turns 83 next month and is still waiting. “That’s what Italy means. People who apply pressure “move on.

Of the 10.6 million doses so far given in Italy, about 1.6 million have been given to people categorized as “other,” prompting some politicians to sue to find out who they are. When questioned, Figliuolo’s office admitted not knowing and said it was pressing the region for specific details.

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Italians in their 70s, mostly out of work, are still waiting for their shots. As of March 31, only 8% had received the first dose and less than 2% had received both.

Then there are people in fragile health, who have priority categories on the government’s launch chart.

“The ‘fragile’ situation is one of huge uncertainties, ” said Francesca Lorenzi, a 48-year-old lawyer in Milan with breast cancer. He noted that if cancer patients had completed therapy more than six months ago, they were no longer considered “fragile”.

“Meanwhile, they are giving a dose of Pfizer to 60 years old who are in good health because they have university contracts. I don’t understand why a university professor or lawyer should be vaccinated before others, “he said.

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Colleen Barry reporting from Milan. Pan Pylas in London contributed to this report.

___

Follow AP pandemic coverage at:

https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic

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https://apnews.com/hub/understanding-the-outbreak

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

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Young professionals outperform older Italians to get vaccines | Instant News


ROME – Octogenarians in Tuscany watched in disbelief and anger as lawyers, judges, professors and other young professionals were vaccinated against COVID-19 before them, despite the government vowing to prioritize Italy’s oldest citizens. Even some of their adult children jumped in front of them.

According to one estimate, failure to administer injections to people over their 80s and in fragile health has claimed thousands of lives in Europe’s oldest-populated country and the second-highest death in the pandemic.

As the elderly were elbowed, a dozen prominent senior citizens in Tuscany issued a letter calling on the authorities, including the governor of the region, for what they said was a violation of their right to health care enshrined in the Italian Constitution.

“We asked ourselves, ‘What is the reason for this difference?'” Said signatory Enzo Cheli, a retired constitutional judge who is less than 87 years old. At the end of March, he was still not vaccinated, three months after the Italian inoculation campaign.

Advertisement

“The appeal is born from the idea that mistakes are being made, violations,” Cheli said in a telephone interview from his home near Siena, noting that investigations are being carried out in Tuscany and other regions where professionals receive priority status.

Those over 80 in Tuscany have the lowest vaccination rates nationwide.

Another signatory is 85-year-old editorial cartoonist Emilio Giannelli, who has not been vaccinated, while his son, a lawyer, has been vaccinated.

Giannelli cartoons appear on the front page of the Corriere della Sera depicting a young man in a business jacket kicking an old man leaning on a stick from the vaccine trail.

In a country where many citizens have learned not to rely on an often weak national government, too much influence is exercised by lobby groups, sometimes derided as “caste”.

Prime Minister Mario Draghi has criticized the “impact of such contracts”, saying last month that “the bottom line is the need to vaccinate the most vulnerable and those over the 80s.” Its government insists that vaccinations continue according to age, with the only exceptions being school and university employees, security forces, prison and prison personnel, and those living in communal residences such as monasteries.

Advertisement

According to a tally by the ISPI think tank, unrolling vaccinations for younger Italians cost 6,500 lives from mid-January to March, a period in which nearly 28,000 died.

ISPI researcher Matteo Villa said any decisions to vaccinate non-healthcare professionals at risk of infection should be limited to those aged 50 and over.

“If we give 100 vaccines to people over 90, we save 13 lives,” Villa said in a telephone interview, citing the death rate. “But it takes 100,000 vaccines for 20 to 29 years to save just one life.”

The average age of death from a pandemic in Italy is currently 81 years.

Throughout the pandemic, the oldest Italians accounted for the majority of deaths, and not just in Tuscany. Just before Draghi sounded the warning about the lobby group, journalists in the small area of ​​Molise were getting ready to get vaccinated early. In Lombardy, veterinarians are given priority. In Campania, a region including Naples, drug company salespeople are given priority status.

Advertisement

Regional leaders have blamed delays in vaccine deliveries, accusing the government’s previous vaccine launches of opening the door to lobby groups.

Some areas such as Lazio, including Rome, hold their pressure. As of the end of March, nearly 64% of those aged 80 and over in Lazio had received at least one COVID-19 injection, compared to 40% in Tuscany.

Speaking of the most fragile of society, Lazio Governor Nicola Zingaretti told the newspaper Corriere della Sera: “It is true that everyone is at risk of contracting COVID, but the difference is that they are among those who, if infected, are at risk of dying more than others.”

Of Italy’s 4.4 million residents aged 80 or older, less than 29% have been vaccinated, and another 27% only had their first dose at the end of March, said the GIMBE foundation, which monitors health care in Italy.

That compares with 95% of that age group in Malta who had received at least one dose, and 85% in Finland, according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, Italy.

Advertisement

In the UK, where vaccine launches begin roughly a month before the EU, most of those over 50 have received at least one dose.

The GIMBE official, Renata Gili, attributed Italy’s largely uneven performance to various organizational capabilities as well as “excess regional autonomy in the selection of priority categories for vaccination.”

Some lobby groups did not back down. The National Magistrates Association, which represents most of Italy’s more than 9,600 judges, has threatened to slow down the slug-paced justice system if they are not given priority. On Thursday, the tourism lobby demanded priority vaccines for its workers, describing them as essential to the country’s recovery.

On Friday, a top Health Ministry official, Giovanni Rezza, attempted to stop the struggle for priorities.

“There is a struggle between categories ” for vaccine priority, Rezza told a news conference when asked if supermarket employees could get special status.” We said, ‘Let’s get it over with teachers, security forces, but let’s not have categories anymore.’ We will only use age criteria. “

Advertisement

The military general who was tapped last month by Draghi to destabilize Italy’s COVID-19 vaccination campaign acknowledged a widespread problem.

“Is everything going well? No, ” General Francesco Figliuolo told reporters Wednesday in Milan.

How many people in Italy receive priority vaccines is unknown. The Tuscany health commission’s office said that before Draghi withdrew from the special interest group, 10,319 lawyers, judges, courthouse clerks and personnel had received doses in the region.

Allowing lawyers and others to have quick access to vaccines is “ a problem, and everyone is angry about it, ” said Nathan Levi, an antiques dealer in Florence who turns 83 next month and is still waiting. “That’s what Italy means. People who apply pressure “move on.

Of the 10.6 million doses so far given in Italy, about 1.6 million have been given to people categorized as “other,” prompting some politicians to sue to find out who they are. When questioned, Figliuolo’s office admitted not knowing and said it was pressing the region for specific details.

Advertisement

Italians in their 70s, mostly out of work, are still waiting for their shots. As of March 31, only 8% had received the first dose and less than 2% had received both.

Then there are people in fragile health, who have priority categories on the government’s launch chart.

“The ‘fragile’ situation is one of huge uncertainties, ” said Francesca Lorenzi, a 48-year-old lawyer in Milan with breast cancer. He noted that if cancer patients had completed therapy more than six months ago, they were no longer considered “fragile”.

“Meanwhile, they are giving a dose of Pfizer to 60 years old who are in good health because they have university contracts. I don’t understand why a university professor or lawyer should be vaccinated before others, “he said.

___

Colleen Barry reporting from Milan. Pan Pylas in London contributed to this report.

___

Follow AP pandemic coverage at:

https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic

Advertisement

https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-vaccine

https://apnews.com/hub/understanding-the-outbreak

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

.



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