Being a community during Covid-19 has been easier for San Patrignano, thanks to Doctors with Africa CUAMM. Last November, the NGO supported San Patrignano Community installing a new Wi-Fi network in the medical centre and four video stations. The technologies have already been used to put in contact the hosts of the community with therapists, doctors and families, ensuring the continuity of care during the pandemic. This new IT system is funded by the U.S. Government through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and will improve the work and quality of life of people in the community, paying particular attention to HIV+ patients admitted in the medical centre.

San Patrignano Community hosts a thousand people for rehab and has also a medical centre where patients with HIV and AIDS are treated. During the first lockdown, between March and May 2020, the community has been spared by Covid-19, sacrificing much of the services offered and limiting contacts with the outside. New admissions were postponed, as well as family visits, and psychotherapies which involved professionals coming from the outside were reduced. With the new video stations, these activities have been developed online, while the medical centre can now guarantee consultations and check-ups for the patients via telemedicine experimentation. Students who live in San Patrignano have been using the video stations to access distance learning classes, with a big improvement in terms of comfort.

Alessandro Rodino dal Pozzo and Antonio Boschini, respectively president and medical director of San Patrignano’s Community, hosted at the handover ceremony, together with Mimma Spinelli, mayor of Coriano, and Veronica Censi and Andrea Iannetti from Doctors with Africa CUAMM.

Alessandro Rodino Dal Pozzo, president of San Patrignano, stated,

“This project is really important to us. Covid-19 forced us to reorganize our work and the lack of contacts with the world outside our community might have been an unbearable burden for our guys. In the beginning, we tried to replace physical meetings with phone calls, both to reach out to family and doctors. Then we understood that seeing their beloved and talking via video calls with therapists and doctors was much more efficient for our hosts. To achieve this goal, the support of Doctors with Africa CUAMM has been fundamental. Over the last two months, from December 2020 to January 2021, we have made possible 230 calls between our guys and their families, 148 telemedicine consultations, 99 interviews for admission, and 73 interviews for psychological support”.

Veronica Censi, project manager of Doctors with Africa CUAMM, explained,

“We are supporting San Patrignano’s Community in the framework of our larger project “Italian Response to Covid-19” (IRC19), that aims to create more resilient healthcare facilities and communities and to provide training for healthcare professionals broadly in Italy. This year we have seen how the knowledge gathered in many years of work in epidemics in Africa can be helpful in Italy as well. We are to sustain the community of San Patrignano, thanks to the U.S. Government, which is supporting a number of initiatives in Italy, aiming at reducing the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic.”

USAID, which funds IRC19, is the U.S. Government’s premiere development organization operating in more than 100 countries worldwide.


This press release is made possible by the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The contents are the responsibility of Doctors with Africa CUAMM, recipient of the Fixed Amount Award (FAA) No. 7200AA20FA00013 and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.

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