Covid-19 in Italy: rapid tests for all passengers on Rome-Milan flights

Plans to create a "covid-free" route between Rome and Milan.

All passengers on flights between Rome Fiumicino and Milan Malpensa will soon undergo a rapid swab test for covid-19, according to plans announced by the Lazio regional health authorities.

Travellers on Alitalia flights between Rome and Milan will be tested under the experimental project which is expected to begin at the middle of this month, reports Italian news agency Adnkronos.

The goal of the plan, currently being fine-tuned in collaboration with Aeroporti di Roma (AdR) and Alitalia, is "to reach a 'covid free' route in some key sectors such as air transport," according to Lazio regional health councillor, Alessio D'Amato.

The swab gives the result within about 15 minutes, preventing covid-19 positive passengers from boarding the plane, D'Amato told Adnkronos.

The experimental project "will then be extended to longer routes such as the Rome-New York flights" - said D'Amato - "We want to restore confidence and satisfaction to travellers, guaranteeing safety with tests even for longer routes, and thus restart safely a very important economic sector, suffering from the covid pandemic."

D'Amato also stated that to date more than 20,000 swab tests have been carried out at Rome's two airports, Fiumicino and Ciampino, finding "1 per cent covid-19 positive."

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