Italy’s Senate overwhelmingly approves early COVID treatment options
‘The issue is to treat COVID, not to wait (until) it’s already reached a situation of cytokine storms where you cannot save the patient without hospitals, without ICU.’
JEANNE SMITS for LIFESITE NEWS
The Italian Senate has voted almost unanimously in favor of early outpatient treatment therapies for COVID, accepting a motion introduced by Senator Massimiliano Romeo, a member of Matteo Salvini’s Lega.
Even though the motion will need to go through further parliamentary process, the decision is a breakthrough. Without defining actual protocols and medicines, the Senate put the subject squarely on the table and answers will need to be given.
Dr. Andrea Stramezzi, a prominent Italian doctor, told Xavier Azalbert of the only consistently anti-sanitary dictatorship national daily in France, FranceSoir:
“The issue is to treat COVID, not to wait (until) it’s already reached a situation of cytokine storms where you cannot save the patient without hospitals, without ICU. So we are very, very happy.”
A commission will now be set up to establish which medicines should be used and also their timing.
AIFA, the Italian Medicines Agency, had already been brought to court by Dr. Stramezzi and several other doctors to put an end to the protocol that involved giving only paracetamol and then “waiting and waiting” until the patient needed to go to hospital for treatment. AIFA will be writing its own protocols, but the Senate Commission will also submit its own conclusions.
Dr. Stramezzi told FranceSoir that the medical doctor who has been named to head the commission, Dr. Matteo Bassetti of Genoa, is already known, but the other participants are not. While the outcome of their work remains to be seen, Dr. Stramezzi said he hoped they would be choosing “the right way.”
The objective is to define a protocol for early treatment and roll it out to all medical centers and doctors in Italy, Dr. Stramezzi confirmed. He noted that in Italy, as in France, the same “virus stars” — virologists using the same approach — appear every evening on television to say that “only the vaccination campaign” will make it possible to move out of the pandemic, “and they also say: ‘We don’t have any treatment.’”
“That is not true,” Stramezzi insisted. He suggested that either these media doctors have connections with “Big Pharma” or they don’t know what COVID actually is, because they don’t see outpatients at the beginning of the infection but only in-patients who are already experiencing a cytokine storm and not breathing anymore. “So they haven’t understood, in my opinion, how to treat COVID,” he said.
“We know how to treat COVID: all over the world, they know,” he stressed, quoting a conference call during which many doctors from Brazil, Canada, the United States, and South America explained that they are treating outpatients with many different medicines: hydroxychloroquine, azithromycin, ivermectin, cortisone, heparin.
“COVID is treatable. That’s very important and that’s why the Senate’s decision has changed the cards on the table,” Dr. Stramezzi said. “Now we can say officially that the therapy exists. And so we have to improve the numbers of doctors who go to people’s homes or who use telemedicine, who call patients and start to treat them. If we start to treat all people with early treatment – outpatients – we can empty hospitals and we can stop people dying. And we can open up restaurants, bars, schools, and whatever. The right way is this way. Of course, we can do vaccines, if you want to do it, if you trust them, you are free to do it. The campaign is correct: let’s vaccinate everybody. But we need to treat people.”
He noted that the previous day, 700 deaths were attributed to COVID in Italy. “That is not a acceptable after more than one year of pandemic, because now we know how to treat it,” he said.
Stramezzi and other Italian doctors wrote to the government a year ago to suggest the use of a therapy that by now has allowed them to treat and cure more than 10,000 patients, with only “five or six” deaths, but the government was not interested.
Media coverage of the Senate’s latest decision to at least investigate possible early treatments has been sparse in Italy. According to Stramezzi, another doctor who has been treating outpatients with success from the start, Luigi Cavanna, was recommended for the Nobel Peace Prize last December, but he did not obtain one line from the mainstream media.
Two lawsuits won by Stramezzi and others against AIFA and the ministry of health were also blacked out by the national media, who “talk about vaccines 24 hours a day.” “It seems the mainstream is not interested in treatments,” he added.
Answering a query from Azalbert, he said 15 percent or 20 percent of doctors, “those who don’t watch television,” are aware of the early treatments. Stramezzi and his group are using social media to reach the public and explain that their fear of COVID is unjustified because there is an efficient cure. With a cure, he said, the “fear factor” can be removed.
It is in fact the only way to stop people from relying on the vaccine and lockdown measures as the only possible remedies that could allow reopening the country. Stramezzi concluded that every nation should have teams of doctors, journalists and lawyers who would join internationally to get the word out that treatment is possible:
“We are the people, we have to be united in this fight. If the government doesn’t understand what to do, we have understood and we have to say what we know.”
The Italian Piedmont region has already taken steps in the right direction. Since the beginning of March, the administrative region led by Alberto Cirio of Forza Italia decided to change course in its fight against COVID. After one year of recommending only paracetamol and “watchful waiting” until the worst cases turned up in hospitals – these are AIFA’s official guidelines – the regional administrative court concurred with a group of “dissident” doctors who wanted early treatment to be recognized.
Now a political decision has followed.
“We are convinced, because we have observed it in the field since the first wave, that in many cases the virus can be fought very effectively by treating patients at home,” explained regional health councillor Luigi Icardi. “It doesn’t mean just prescribing acetaminophen over the phone and standing by vigilantly, but taking care of patients at home.”
Piedmont had already signed a protocol last year guaranteeing health care free choice regarding treatment. Now, alongside heparin, steroids and antibiotics, Piedmont has introduced for the first time in Italy protocols including vitamin D, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and hydroxychloroquine. Use of the latter is legal for COVID since the Council of State has allowed the prescription under precise responsibility and under strict control of the doctor.
The region is also setting up outpatient clinics that will allow better services for diagnosis and management of COVID-19, including oxygen saturation monitoring and blood gas analysis as well as electrocardiograms, ultrasounds and other tests.
Locally, the Academy of Medicine of Turin has also set up a working group to assess the benefits of vitamin D, both in prevention and for complications related to the Wuhan coronavirus. Three hundred researchers listed on PubMed have already observed that a lack of vitamin D is common to a majority of COVID patients and associated with higher mortality. The Turin study showed that 31.86 percent of symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 bearers and a whopping 96.82 percent of those who were admitted into ICUs had a vitamin D deficiency.
In a randomized trial of 76 oligo-symptomatic patients, the percentage of subjects who subsequently required ICU admission was 2 percent when treated with high doses of calcifediol and 50 percent in untreated patients.