Italy: Care home's 'hug wall' allows relatives to embrace again amid pandemic

A care home has come up with a clever way of combatting the separation felt by families amid the pandemic by using protective screens to create a hugging wall, allowing families to embrace their loved ones while adhering to social distancing guidelines in Castelfranco Veneto, as seen on Tuesday. The centre's director, Elisabetta Barbato, came up with the idea when she «thought of the incubator that welcomes premature babies.» The protective screens with gloves and headsets for communication allows families «to be brought closer but at the same time protects them just like an incubator.» Barbato explained it is beneficial for residents and relatives alike, offering «a whole series of improvements in cognitive and behavioral parameters.» Relatives of the residents were equally enthused about this novel way of keeping in contact, calling it «truly great.» One relative went on to say that «there are no words to describe how nice it is.» Italy is battling a steep rise in cases again, with the country having recorded over 46,000 deaths due to COVID-19 and this week reported the highest number of deaths in a day in over six months.

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