A Clonbur woman living in northern Italy has pleaded with people in Ireland to stay at home in order to fight the spread of Covid-19.
Caitriona Joyce from Cloughbrack, Clonbur, just over the Mayo-Galway border, is based just outside Codogno in Lombardy. Codogno was where the first case of Covid-19 in Italy was confirmed on February 21 and over 3,000 of Italy’s 4,825 deaths have been in the Lombardy region.
Speaking in an interview with Liam Horan for Believe in Ballinrobe’s Facebook page – Ms Joyce has family living in the town – she urged people to learn lessons from Italy.
She told tragic stories of husbands and wives dying, young people with no apparent underlying health conditions succumbing, not enough spaces for corpses in the mortuaries in nearby Bergamo and people dying alone because family members are not allowed be in hospital with them.
When asked what she would advise people in Ireland to do, Ms Joyce was clear.
“I’d say you need to isolate. Obviously you are changing your whole lifestyle, everything that you were used to, you go out the door, you go for a walk, you go to the shops and you meet your friends and all of that. It just has to change. You need to stay at home because it is so contagious. We see here all the cases, it is incredible.
“The majority of people come through it, many people won’t even know they have it but people with compromised immune systems, the elderly, they’re at risk. You could be absolutely fine and you could pass it onto them and then they’re at risk and the sad, sad reality then is if you have it, you’re elderly or you have a compromised immune system, you could be any age – you end up you have to go into hospital and the ambulance comes. The ambulance takes you away and your family cannot go with you. You’re in hospital. You can imagine, no family around and God forbid the worst happens, you pass away and your family are not there and there is no funeral. That’s how bad it is, it is tragic.
“People need to listen. You need to stay at home, it will change your lifestyle but it’s not forever,” she said.