COVID-19 pandemic: perspectives on an unfolding crisis

A. Spinelli*, G. Pellino

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

540 Citations (Scopus)


COVID-19 has been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as confirmed cases approach 200 000 patients with what will exceed 8000 deaths across over 160 countries1. After the initial description in Wuhan and China, Italy was hit first in Europe and the impact has been immense2. The virus spread very rapidly such that 2 weeks from the first cases diagnosed 1000 patients tested positive. One week later the number of positive cases exceeded 4600, reaching over 30 000 patients and 2500 deaths on the 18 March 20201,2. The region of Lombardy was the most profoundly affected, with local institutions forced to reset the entire healthcare system to face the challenges, while the Italian government ordered a nationwide lockdown4. Other nations followed, for example, Spain declared the state of emergency on 14 March and announced similar measures to be taken5.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)785-787
Number of pages3
JournalBritish Journal of Surgery
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2020


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