Man tries to dodge Covid vaccine by wearing fake arm
He's now facing charges of fraud as a result
A man in Italy tried to avoid getting the Covid vaccine by wearing a fake arm to his appointment.
The incident took place at a vaccine hub in Biella, near Turn, and the man has since faced a charge of fraud.
Turning up for his appointment, the man, who has not been identified, filled in all the necessary consent forms before sitting down and lifting up the sleeve of his shirt so that health worker Filippa Bua could give him the vaccine.
And whilst at first, the health worker didn't notice anything out of the ordinary, her suspicions were aroused when she touched the arm. When she asked the man to take off his shirt, he tried to persuade her to turn a blind eye to his plan.
"I felt offended as a professional," Bua told La Repubblica.
"The colour of the arm made me suspicious and so I asked the man to uncover the rest of his left arm. It was well made but it wasn’t the same colour."
The man apparently asked Bua if she had "imagined that I'd have such a physique?"
Describing her reaction when she couldn't see the man's veins, she told La Stampa: "At first I thought I made a mistake, that it was a patient with an artificial arm."
It is not clear whether the man was wearing a whole fake arm or just a silicone layer over his skin.
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According to La Repubblica, the man appeared to have been thinking of the idea for some time. The paper highlighted a recent post on Twitter from the man which featured a silicone male chest half-body suit, complete with fake arms and neck, that was on sale on Amazon for €488 (£416).
He wrote alongside the image: "If I go with this, will they notice? Maybe beneath the silicone, I’ll even put on some extra clothes to avoid the needle reaching my real arm."
Alberto Cirio, the president of Piedmont, said in a joint statement with Luigi Icardi, the regional health councillor that the case would "border on the ridiculous" were it not "for the fact that we are talking about a gesture of enormous gravity".
"It is unacceptable in the face of the sacrifice that the pandemic is making the whole community pay for," they added.
In November, Italy introduced tough new measures for those who aren't vaccinated, barring them from a host of social, cultural, and sporting activities.