A Story of Healthcare Hero From Rome, Italy

A Story of Healthcare Hero From Rome, Italy

A Story of Healthcare Hero From Rome, Italy 366 222 Shlomi Ron

As we all know, Italy was one of the countries that got hurt the most early on when the pandemic broke out in late March. At its peak on April 20th, Italy had 108,000 active cases.

We hear a lot about the hard work of health workers, but do we truly understand the magnitude of the sacrifice they are making?

In this episode of the Visual Storytelling Today podcast, I wanted to zoom in into the life-saving work of Dr. Federico Conforto, who is a friend and also a Critical Care physician who works at San Camilo Hospital in Rome, Italy. His job practically places him in the eye of the storm, battling the coronavirus every day.

A small confession.

I have a special bond to Italy, as I carry a long passion for Italian cinema that stemmed from taking Italian language classes. Why? No reason other than my sheer interest in experiencing the world through different cultural lenses. And yet, it has to do with the emotional storytelling, the rich visual language, the magical soundtracks, and authentic characters that over time became familiar as good old friends.

For over 10 years, I was writing about classic Italian films on my blog cafePellicola.com. and also organized festivals where I curated the films and ran post-screening Q&A discussions with the audience.

Yep, those timeless black & white classics from the ’40s-’60s that without a doubt paved the way to shaping my interest in visual storytelling. To get into the right mindset, check out 1957’s film by Luciano Emmer, The Most Beautiful Moment – Il Momento Più Bello, starring Marcello Mastroianni as the charming Obstetrician.

Since I am always looking to bring guests with unique perspectives who can take us on a high-stakes journey, overcoming their internal emotions and external challenges to achieve a worthy goal – I was super excited to have Dr. Conforto on the show to share what it really means to battle the virus day in day out on the frontline.

A bit more about Dr. Conforto.

He specializes in Airway Management, Ventilation, Infection disease control, Antibiotics Therapy, Therapeutic protocols, Research, and Lung Ultrasound. Dr. Conforto is also a member of the Covid-19 Task Force in his hospital.

And if that’s not enough, the word “Conforto” in Italian means comfort or solace – which couldn’t be a better fit to describe the life-saving work Dr. Conforto is doing.

Some of the questions I asked Dr. Conforto:

– Why have you decided to become a doctor?

– Can you describe a day in your life? How many hours? What was your most emotional moment?

– What is the most effective therapy strategy to fight COVID-19, pre-vaccine? Plasma, Remdesivir, etc?

– You told me that the most difficult moment is that you work hard to save lives but at the same time you need to protect yourself. Can you share more?

– Can you describe a moment when patients or the public expressed gratitude for your incredible work?

– What people should watch out for now that many countries are loosening up restrictions on the stay at home orders? Sweden’s herd immunity.

– What is the most troubling pandemic misconception you’ve come across?

– When will the virus disappear? Can you also address the potential problem of post-traumatic stress disorder people may face post-corona?

– What would be your top 3 tips for watching out during the current reopening period?

And much more!

Watch the full video recording of this interview:


Need a screen break?
You can also listen to the audio podcast of this episode.
Subscribe to the Visual Storytelling Today podcast on iTunes, Google Podcasts, and all other podcast networks.


Photos Dr. Conforto shared to bring to life his stories:

A photo Dr. Conforto picked as for him it represents the emotional holy experience of treating a CoronaVirus patient. It’s modeled after the famed Michelangelo’s masterpiece – The pity.


Artist Kathy Turnbull made this portrait for Dr. Conforto as a thank you for his daily battle with the pandemic.

Shlomi Ron

Shlomi Ron is the founder and CEO of the Visual Storytelling Institute, a Miami-based think tank with a mission to bring the gospel of visual storytelling from the world of art into a more human-centric and purpose-driven marketing. A digital marketing veteran with over 20 years of experience working both on the agency and brand sides for Fortune 100/500 brands such as Nokia, IBM, and American Express. He started VSI to combine his marketing expertise with his passions for visual stories stemming from interests in classic Italian cinema and managing the estate of video art pioneer, Buky Schwartz. At VSI, he helps brands rise above the communication noise through visual storytelling consulting, training, and thought leadership. Select clients include Estée Lauder, Microsoft, and Cable & Wireless – to name a few. He currently teaches Brand Storytelling at the University of Miami’s Business School. Thought leader and speaker at key marketing conferences. He is also the host of the Visual Storytelling Today podcast, which ranks in the top 10 best business storytelling podcasts on the Web. His book: Total Acuity: Tales with Marketing Morals to Help You Create Richer Visual Brand Stories. Outside work, he is a nascent bread baker, The Moth fan, and longtime fedora wearer likely to jive with his classic Italian cinema interest.

All stories by: Shlomi Ron
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