Foreign visitors have helped prop up the faltering Italian economy. If they don’t come back, the country is in trouble.
- 39.4 Public Health
- 0 Financial
- 100 Fact-Based
While hit hard by COVID-19, Italy’s reliance on facts and improved contact tracing has helped slow the spread and slightly improved its overall score since January.
Despite a relatively strong overall healthcare system, Italy’s low number of hospital beds likely played a major role in COVID-19’s devastating impact there.
- Debt/GDP ratio 135.5%
- GDP/capita $41,582
- Gini coefficient (out of 100) 35.9
- Infant mortality rate (out of 1,000 live births) 3
- Healthcare access score (out of 100) 88.7
- Hospital beds/1,000 People 24.1
Government ResponseSelect a data point for more information
(Data points represent policy level as of Mar 15.)
Public Health Directives
Italy’s health score is relatively weak, with improvements to contact tracing being one of the only areas of improvment.
- Stay at home order 2
- Public gathering restrictions 4
- School closings 3
- Public event cancellations 2
- Testing policy 2
- Emergency healthcare investments/capita $122.23
- Travel restrictions 3
- Tests/1,000 people 741
- Contact tracing 2
Italy has a very weak score on financial support, driven largely by its low level of income support for workers, which it also implemented fairly late in the crisis.
- Financial stimulus as share of GDP 15%
- Income support 1
- Debt forebearance 2
Italy’s government has not engaged in misinformation or limited press freedom in response to COVID-19.
- Reliance on science/fact based information 0
- Press freedom 0
COVID-19 Status as of Mar 15
Italy’s current status with regard to COVID-19 is at the median, although relatively strong restrictions have helped to lower case and death rates since January.
- Total deaths 22,432
- Death rate per 100K 371
- Total cases 3,238,394
- Cases per 100K 342
- Percent of positive tests 6.9
- Change in positivity rates -5
|1||May 18||Retail, restaurants, and hairdressers reopen||7.46|
|2||May 25||Sports facilities reopen||4.96|
|3||Jun 15||cinemas and theaters reopened||4.98|
|4||Aug 17||Nightclubs close, masks mandated||5.29|
|5||Sep 14||Some schools reopen||16.67|
|6||Sep 18||Relaxes ban on spectators at sporting events, allowing up to 1,000 fans per game||31.54|
|7||Oct 25||Restaurants and bars must close at 6pm, max of 4 people per table||351.84|
|8||Nov 05||National curfew from 10pm to 5am, all museums and galleries close, all shopping centers close on weekends, schools go full-time online, public transportation only allowed with 50% capacity (from 80% before)||570.64|
|9||Jan 06||Intra-regional travel banned until mid-January||336.18|
|10||Jan 10||Five regions became high-risk (including Lombardy), adding more restrictions, including limiting travel to/from them, as Italy goes back to tiered system, based on impact of virus, for restrictions||308.05|
|11||Feb 22||Extended inta-region travel restrictions until March 27th||159.06|
|12||Mar 02||Extended restrictions until April 6th, with all schools going virtual in the most badly hit regions||282.21|
- Sputnik V to be made in Italy: Russia signed a deal to make its Sputnik V vaccine in Italy, with an aim to start in July, as the slow vaccine rollout in the EU has led countries to consider other options. Read More
- EU vaccine exports to Australia blocked by Italy: Italy blocked the export of 250,000 doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to Australia, citing low doses and a slow distribution in Europe, along with Australia not being a vulnerable nation. Read More
- Italy to use legal channels to get delayed vaccines: Italy planned to take legal action against Pfizer and AstraZeneca to ensure they fulfill their contracts regarding doses promised to the EU. Read More
- Prime minister resigns amidst pandemic response criticism: Prime Minister Conte resigned, after months of criticism, including over his management of the second wave of COVID-19 in Italy, threatening more uncertainty as the pandemic worsened in-country. Read More
- COVID-19 spreading through Italian jails: COVID-19 cases have risen substantially in Italy's overcrowded jails, and a prison guard union is calling on the government to play a stronger role. Read More
- Migrants become targets for right-wing politicians: As COVID-19 numbers climb in Italy, right-wing political leaders are inaccurately blaming migrants for the rise. Read More
- COVID-19 requires new response to migration: Southern Italy remains a popular entry point for migrants crossing the Mediterranean, necessitating new protocols for migrant arrivals. In early July, 180 migrants rescued from the sea were subjected to a two-week quarantine on board a ship docked in Sicily, where NGOs have reported a high incidence of violence and suicide attempts. Read More
Compared with Neighboring/Nearest Countries
Per 1M 1,254
Switzerland's reliance on facts and an open media drove its score up to the median, helping to counter weak financial support and limited restrictions on social interactions.
Per 1M 24,105
France maintained its improved public health policy from the early fall, keeping its score relatively strong, although poor contact tracing and a relatively small stimulus package kept it from being higher.
Per 1M 4,870
Spain's score jumped since January to just over the median, having implemented stricter public health policies, but the country's minimal stimulus support still drags down its overall score.
Further Reading From Foreign Policy
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Statistics and government response factors available on each country profile include:
- Debt to GDP ratio
- Infant mortality rates
- Hospital beds per 1,000 people
- Gini coefficients measuring inequality
- Health access and quality
COVID-19 Public Health Directives:
- Stay-at home orders
- School-closing policy
- Public-gathering restrictions
- Cancellation of public events
- Testing policy and rates per 1,000 people
- Emergency healthcare spending per capita
- Travel restrictions
- Contact tracing
COVID-19 Financial Response:
- Stimulus package as a share of GDP
- Income support
- Instances of misinformation by leadership
- Limitations on press freedom, censorship
Current/Historic In-Country COVID-19 Status:
- Death rates per 1 million
- Case rates per 1 million