PORTLAND, Maine — Millions of people in Italy have been under strict quarantine instruction for the past couple of weeks, including Maine native Shannon Mosey.
She and her fiance live in the tourist rich region of Veneta. However, right now the streets outside are empty and the shops are closed due to the recent coronavirus outbreak.
"Three weeks ago stuff started to get serious," Mosey said. "It looks like a ghost town but it isn't panicked... most people are in agreement at this point that everything is closed."
As of Monday, Italy was nearing 30-thousand cases of the coronavirus. The most startling news came overnight – after it was reported more than 350 people died from the disease caused by the virus there in the last 24 hours alone.
Mosey says you can leave your home to go to places like the grocery store and pharmacy or to check on loved ones, but you are required to fill out a form and have your ID with you.
Schools have also been closed for weeks. Mosey teaches English to students at a local private school and has had to use her apartment as her virtual classroom.
"It’s kind of an adjustment for everybody because we didn’t have any online teaching strategies lined up ahead of time," Mosey said. "We started with adult classes last week and we’re starting with kids lessons today online... so, we’ll see how the 8-year-olds do with the online videos."
Mosey believes the quarantine period in Italy will finally be lifted by mid-April, but until then, she has some advice for those back in Maine: practice social distancing.
"We’re trying to be respectful of social distancing, otherwise why are we doing this, there’s no point in social distancing if you don’t stay distant," Mosey said. "There are more people getting sick everyday, the numbers haven't gone down yet, so until that starts to happen, we'll be inside."
At NEWS CENTER Maine, we’re focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the illness. To see our full coverage, visit our coronavirus section, here: /coronavirus
Editor’s note: You are starting to hear the term ‘flattening the curve’ as a way to stem the tide of coronavirus cases. The above video explains what that means.
NEWS CENTER Maine Coronavirus Coverage