(TMU) — Italy is in mourning after a young nurse working in an intensive care unit dealing with the nightmarish coronavirus pandemic took her own life after she contracted the disease, a nursing federation confirmed.
Daniela Trezzi, 34, had been dealing with intense stress due to her frontline work in the European epicenter of the novel virus. However, when she contracted the disease on March 10, she became preoccupied with the possibility that she had already spread the virus to her colleagues at the San Gerardo Hospital in the city of Monza, which is located in the hard-hit Lombardy region.
An Italian nurse killed herself after testing positive for coronavirus and fearing she had infected others, a nursing federation has revealed.
— EHA News (@eha_news) March 25, 2020
On Tuesday, the National Federation of Nurses of Italy (Federazione Nazionale Ordini Professioni Infermieritich) announced that Trezzi had taken her own life this past Sunday. Trezzi had reportedly informed a colleague that she was scared and concerned that she had infected somebody with the virus, Pulzo reports.
In a press statement, the federation said:
“We express our pain and consternation over the suicide of our young colleague. Our 450,000 professionals will join together around the relatives and family of Daniela.”
San Gerardo Hospital Director Mario Aparone also expressed his regret over Trezzi’s death, noting that the relevant authorities would investigate the case.
Tragically, the National Federation of Nurses revealed that this wasn’t the first such case of a nurse taking their own life as a similar incident had happened mere days ago in Venice. The federation said:
“We are at risk of suffering these stressful conditions and a shortage of medical personnel, but this cannot be commented on now.”
Una eroina. Sorella di una mia collaboratrice. Spezza e frantuma il cuore. Morta PER il Coronavirus. Riposi in pace https://t.co/6d3PPSOUhy
— Angel (@DottAngeloC) March 24, 2020
According to the most recent data from Italian health authorities, the country now has at least 69,176 cases of coronavirus and 6,820 deaths—close to double the amount of fatalities registered in China where the novel virus first emerged last December. However, the Italian Civil Protection Agency, which is charged with collating the data, believes that the infections could be as high as 700,000. Agency chief Angelo Borrelli told La Repubblica newspaper that “a ratio of one certified case out of every 10 is credible.”
The Northern Italian region of Lombardy has borne the brunt of the pandemic, with the death toll rising by roughly 296 in a single day to at least 4,474 on Wednesday, Reuters reports.
Amid the crisis, medics have been saddled with the gut-wrenching responsibility of choosing which patients live or die due to the lack of ventilators and hospital beds. Meanwhile, at least 18 doctors have succumbed to CoViD-19 in Italy alone.
Since the outbreak of the novel virus, aid and medical experts have also poured into Northern Italy from China, Cuba, Russia, and the United States in a sort of geopolitical tug-of-war over who can provide the most aid to the struggling Mediterranean nation.