Coronavirus in Italy: urgent measures to deal with the epidemiological emergency

Coronavirus in Italy: urgent measures to deal with the epidemiological emergency.

The new Decree-Law no. 33 of 16 May 2020

In order to responsibly deal with Phase -2 of the COVID-19 epidemic (i.e., a period of ‘co-habitation ‘ with the virus), the Council of Ministers, upon proposal of President Giuseppe Conte and Health Minister Roberto Speranza, has approved a decree-law introducing further urgent measures to deal with the epidemiological emergency of COVID-19 (DECRETO-LEGGE 16 maggio 2020, n. 33 Ulteriori misure urgenti per fronteggiare l’emergenza epidemiologica da COVID-19. (GU n.125 del 16-5-2020). The decree-law which went into effect on May 18th will remain effective until July 31st of this year.

The decree delineates a national, normative framework regarding the movement of people and re-opening of economic, productive and social activities throughout the country.

You can find the full version of the decree here

Urgent measures to deal with the epidemiological emergency

Mr. Giuseppe Conte illustrated in a press conference the measures contained in the new DPCM (Decree of the President of the Council of Ministers) implementing Decree-Law no. 33 of 16 May 2020.

The Italian PM declared that starting from May 18th, it would be possible to move about within one’s own region of residence without having to provide any sort of justification for doing so, making it possible after over three months of limited freedom of movement to visit friends or go to  regional mountain or seaside localities. However, people will still not be allowed to assemble in groups and the wearing of masks will be either required in closed places or recommended in open spaces like crowded streets. It goes without saying that people who test positive for, have symptoms of or have been exposed to the Coronavirus must stay at home.

As of May 18th,  church services could resume with a limited congregation and, until further notice, both clergy and the faithful alike must respect specific preventative measures designed to limit virus contagion. Retail stores, barber and beauty shops, eateries, snack bars, museums and bathing establishments were given the go ahead to re-open on the same day but, here again, safety protocols to be  respected were put in place. Each regional government was delegated with the monitoring of the spread of contagion within its borders in order to ascertain whether the new measures could continue without endangering public health.

Further loosening of lockdown restrictions put in place in March is scheduled for June 3rd. If the statistics regarding the spread of contagion continue to decline, the borders between regions will finally be re-opened at that time. Moreover, it will be possible to travel to other countries –unless otherwise restricted –and travellers to Italy from other  EU countries will not be quarantined. Authorities may, however, restrict such movements should there be a new spike in COVID-19 cases.

Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announced further plans to re-open swimming pools, gyms and sports centers on May 25th and the 15th of June has been set for the re-opening of cinemas and theaters. From the middle of June, local organizations can also offer summer activities for children.

In conclusion, the PM reiterated the essential point that should an increase in COVID-19 cases occur as a result of the loosening of regulations set down to limit contagion, regional governments may adopt new restrictions on the basis of the epidemiological situation within their territory.

Where can I find more information on the Covid-19 (Coronavirus)?

Ministry of Health website

Higher Institute of Health –

Governo Italiano Presidenza del Consiglio dei Ministri website

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