Italian dentist presents fake arm for COVID vaccine to get pass

Top Stories

FILE – Nurse Mary Ezzat prepares to administer a Pfizer COVID-19 booster shot to Jessica M., Thursday, Aug. 19, 2021, at UCI Medical Center in Orange, Calif. Jessica M. is a healthcare worker who is also immunocompromised. California Gov. Gavin Newsom, along with Colorado Gov. Jared Polis and New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham have taken steps to expand the use of booster shots to quell the recent surge in COVID-19 infections. (Jeff Gritchen/The Orange County Register via AP)

MILAN (AP) — A dentist in Italy faces possible criminal charges after trying to receive a coronavirus vaccine in a fake arm made of silicone.

A nurse in the northern city of Biella, Filippa Bua, said she could tell right away that something was off when a man presented the phony limb for a shot on Thursday.

“When I uncovered the arm, I felt skin that was cold and gummy, and the color was too light,’’ Bua told Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera.

She said she initially thought the 57-year-old man was an amputee and had mistakenly offered the wrong arm. She lifted his shirt and saw a silicone arm.

“I understood immediately that the man was trying to avoid the vaccination by using a silicone prosthetic, into which he hoped that I would inject the drug, unaware, Bua said.

The nurse said the man acknowledged he did not want a vaccine but to obtain a “super” health pass, which from Monday will be required to enter restaurants, cinemas, theaters and other venues in Italy. He had already been suspended from work because of his refusal to get vaccinated, which Italy requires for medical personnel.

The nurse said the man was courteous and left the vaccination center after the failed attempt.

“We stopped and reflected, and we understood that this wasn’t just a surreal situation, but a real attempt at fraud,’’ Bua said. She and others at the vaccination site turned paperwork over to superiors so they could report the case, which has been given to prosecutors.

While Italy’s vaccination rate is relatively high at 85% of the currently eligible population ages 12 and over, people in the age range from 30 to 59 have proven the most resistant to vaccinations, with nearly 3.5 million still not having received their first doses.

Copyright 2022 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Utah Coronavirus

More Coronavirus Updates

IN FOCUS

More In Focus

Justice Files

More Justice Files