Coronavirus in Africa: Italian doctor leaves family to go and help in Ethiopia

Dr. Giovanni Putoto was the only passenger on the intercontinental flight from Rome to Addis Ababa last Thursday. He decided to leave his wife and kids to go and help prepare for the Coronavirus pandemic spread in Africa.

Giovanni is a member of the CUAMM – Doctors for Africa Association with many years of experience in emergencies, from Rwanda to Kosovo, having actively participated in the management of the Ebola epidemic in Sierra Leone and in relief operations during the post-tornado Idai emergency in Mozambique. 

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Before becoming fully operational, Dr. Putoto will have to do 14 days of quarantine to prove he is Coronavirus free.

"Coronavirus is even more insidious than Ebola, it infects you without you being able to understand how or when,” the doctor told Corriere della Sera, “You have to be very careful and keep your guard up. "

In Africa "we are on the brink of the abyss. Across the continent, the number of Intensive Care Unit beds is one for every million inhabitants “.

Certainly for him, as a sixty- year- old grandfather and father to four children, it was not easy to choose to leave in such a delicate moment. “My children asked me if they had any say in my decision to go to Africa. I replied no, as in that case even my grandchildren could have weighed in… and I would have been in the minority. "