Coronavirus claims the life of ‘healthy’ paramedic, 47, as pandemic spreads

An Italian paramedic aged just 47 has died of coronavirus .

Diego Bianco, who worked for the Italian emergency ambulance service passed away on Saturday at his house in Montello, northern Italy, where he lived with his wife and their eight-year-old son.

He’s the youngest victim of a virus that has claimed the lives of 1,809 Italians and 6,513 worldwide.

Bianco fell ill on Saturday, March 7. His temperature spiked to 39º Celsius and on Thursday he was tested for COVID-19.

But before the test even came back from the lab, Bianco had died. He slipped away in the early hours of Saturday March 14 after reportedly saying to his wife: "You can go to sleep, my dear. I just need to find a comfortable position to fall asleep.”

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The facility in Bergamo where he worked was closed and deep-cleaned earlier this week after some of his colleagues reported coronavirus symptoms and remained at home.

Bergamo is one of the hardest-hit locations, with reports of morgues overflowing .

Bianco’s workmates said he "died within a day and a half, despite being healthy" because "if you work as a rescuer, you are in good health and constantly monitored".

Another paramedic from the Papa Giovanni XXIII ambulance centre in Bergamo, Davide Brescancin, explained: "The thing that worries us the most is the carelessness with which rescue workers are abandoned to their destiny."

Davide said rescuers, who are constantly being exposed to the virus, are not safe.

He added: "We don't know where Diego contracted the virus, we are all wondering the same. Maybe he was not infected at work, yet there are some factories that intend to reopen tomorrow pending medical supplies.

"But the fast and terrible end of Diego could happen to many of us – unfortunately many others have already died – if we do not immediately close everything, establish a quarantine income and stop all types of production."

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The UK’s youngest victim, Nick Matthews, from Nailsea in Somerset, also died over the weekend. A former police officer, Mr Matthews was just 59.

He had been taken into hospital on Thursday after suffering breathing difficulties, his wife said, and died in the early hours of Saturday morning.

  • Coronavirus

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