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Letter
PediaVirus chatline: all together against COVID-19
  1. Michele Iafusco1,
  2. Clotilde Ciampa2,
  3. Francesco De Maddi3,
  4. Gianluigi Palamone4,
  5. Flavio Quarantiello5,
  6. Giuseppe De Luca6,
  7. Carlo Iannello7,
  8. Simone Pisano8,
  9. Agostino Nocerino9,
  10. Rocco Russo10,
  11. Francesca Orlando1,
  12. Dario Iafusco11
  13. on behalf of the PediaVirus Network
    1. 1 Pediatrics Department,“Pediatria 2”, National Specialty Hospital Santobono Pausilipon, Naples, Italy
    2. 2 Neurology Department, San Giovanni Bosco Hospital, Naples, Italy
    3. 3 Pediatrics Department, National Specialty Hospital Santobono Pausilipon, Naples, Italy
    4. 4 Pediatrics Department, Martiri del Villa Malta Hospital of Sarno, Salerno, Italy
    5. 5 Pediatrics Department, San Pio Hospital, Benevento, Italy
    6. 6 Pediatrics Department, San Giovanni di Dio Frattamaggiore Hospital, Naples, Italy
    7. 7 District 49, ASL NA3 SUD, Naples, Italy
    8. 8 Neuropsychiatry Department, National Specialty Hospital Santobono Pausilipon, Naples, Italy
    9. 9 Division of Pediatrics, University Hospital of Udine, Udine, Italy
    10. 10 Mother and child Department, ASL, Benevento, Italy
    11. 11 Department of Women and Children and General and Specialized Surgery, University of Campania Luigi Vanvitelli, Naples, Italy
    1. Correspondence to Dr Michele Iafusco, Pediatrics Department,“Pediatria 2”, National Specialty Hospital Santobono Pausilipon, Napoli, Italy; micheleiafusco1{at}gmail.com

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    On occasion of the COVID-19 pandemic, in Italy, during the outbreak period, 140 professionals, including paediatricians (the majority), general health practitioners, infectious diseases specialists, epidemiologists, neuropsychiatrists, neurologists, psychologists, pharmaceutical representatives, magistrates, predominantly Italian but also from other countries in Europe and beyond, created a chatline to share their own experiences.

    The chat, created on WhatsApp and called ‘Pediavirus’, has proven to be very helpful to share knowledge on experiences, already-codified and off label therapies, innovative medical proposals by participating doctors, psychological help to those involved first hand (and to their patients), international guidelines, epidemiological tables and daily stats on number of infected/requiring intensive care/deceased; yet, despite the dramatic moment, irony has never gone missing.

    The chat has gradually and autonomously gained its own structure and schedule. Paediatricians acted as a sort of local envoys because they were distributed in all the health centres of Campania and in most of the Italian regions from where they could provide comments, rumours and news ahead of the daily official press briefing by the government.

    We analysed about 100 000 messages written in the chat over about 2 months, that is, since the outbreak of the epidemic in Italy up until today with …

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