Helpline set up for high risk groups like homeless and elderly


ROME – The Community of Sant'Egidio has activated a new telephone line for the most fragile people in Rome (06 8992299), which will give healthcare information and provide services such as home deliveries.

  “The service is aimed in particular at the elderly, the sick, lonely people, who need help with social problems or pathologies other than coronavirus, who in this period encounter serious difficulties,” according to an official press release.

  Homeless people are one group particularly at risk, with limited means to self-isolate or practice social-distancing.

  In the city of Alessandria, a new project started on Thursday to keep hostels open in order to provide places for homeless people to stay. “We have worked so that these people can stay inside hostels for the whole day and not just the night,” said the mayor of Alessandria, Gianfranco Cuttica di Revigliasco, as quoted in La Stampa. 

  In Milan, Milano Sport centres have been working with the regional welfare department to provide housing the homeless, with ample showers and toilet facilities ensuring that hygiene standards can be met, in an effort to prevent dense clusters of people, report Corriere Della Sera.

  The elderly are another fragile group who need protection, such as in the case of the ‘Marotti’ retirement home in the region of Montemarciano, in which 42 elderly people out of 90 have been hospitalised, along with 23 workers, according to Il Messaggero.

  Sant'Egidio have clarified that although their phone service can be of great use for some medical situations, medical emergencies and any pathologies related to coronavirus should be dealt with by the regional health services.

  The phoneline will be open every day from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., and from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.