Italy's coronavirus death toll rises 760 to 13,915 with 115,242 cases

Italy sees small dip in number of new coronavirus infections but daily fatalities rise slightly to 760 as country still waits to flatten the curve

  • Italy’s death toll from the coronavirus outbreak has today risen by 760 to 13,915
  • The number of confirmed cases there rose to 115,242 from Wednesday’s 110,570
  • Pressure on hospitals in Lombardy ease, with more than 800 people recovered
  • The Vatican recorded seventh coronavirus case and extended partial lockdown

Italy has seen a small dip in the number of new coronavirus infections but daily fatalities have risen slightly as the country still waits to flatten the curve.

The death toll rose by 760 to 13,915, while the number of confirmed cases grew by 4668 to hit 115,242.

Pressure on hospitals in hard-hit Lombardy continued to ease, with more than 800 people recovered and 165 fewer people hospitalised with Covid-19 compared to a day earlier.

Intensive care units are still saturated, but overall, Lombardy added just under 1,300 new positive cases, with about half of those infected being treated at home.

More than 10,000 medical personnel have been infected nationwide and 69 doctors have died, according to the National Institutes of Health and the Italian association of doctors.

A man wearing a makeshift protective mask walks down the street in Rome as Italy battles to bring its coronavirus outbreak under control

Meanwhile the Vatican recorded its seventh coronavirus case and extended its partial lockdown of activities until May 4.

The Vatican says a Vatican employee tested positive after having been on home quarantine since mid-March because his wife, who works in a hospital, was infected.

The Vatican previously had six cases, including a high-ranking official who lived in the same residence as Pope Francis.

The Vatican has said the pope and his closest advisers haven’t been infected.

Francis also Thursday issued a decree extending the suspension of activities of the Vatican City State’s criminal tribunal until May 4.

The Holy See says it has reduced its activities to only work essential for the functioning of the headquarters of the universal Catholic Church.

Healthcare workers wearing protective suits move a suspected coronavirus patient out of a retirement home in Naples so he can be treated in hospital

A corona patient from Bergamo is taken off an airplane at the Leipzig-Halle Airport after Germany volunteered to treat some of Italy’s sick

Medical staff in full protective gear carry a patient on a stretcher down a street in Naples

Francis’ Holy Week and Easter services, which begin Sunday with Palm Sunday, are being conducted without the faithful present. 

The figures were revealed as the head of the European Commission apologised to Italy for a lack of solidarity from Europe in tackling its coronavirus crisis, but promised greater help in dealing with the economic fallout.

There has been widespread dismay in Italy over Europe’s response to the pandemic, starting with an initial failure to send medical aid, followed by a refusal amongst northern nations to endorse joint bonds to mitigate the cost of recovery.

The far-right League party has jumped on the discontent to call into question Italy’s continued membership of the 27-nation bloc, while even staunch pro-Europeans have expressed consternation at the lack of empathy and support.

Italy has recorded 13,155 coronavirus deaths in just six weeks, more than anywhere else in the world, and registered 110,574 confirmed cases, second only to the United States.

The owner of a tailor’s shop in Rome who has started making protective masks hands packs out to locals in Rome

A woman walks with her dog through the quiet streets of Milan during Italy’s lockdown

In a letter published in the Italian daily La Repubblica, Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said too many EU countries had initially focused on their own problems.

‘They did not realise that we can only defeat this pandemic together, as a Union. This was harmful and could have been avoided,’ she wrote, adding: ‘Today Europe is rallying to Italy’s side.’

The main bone of contention is a request by Italy and eight other countries to issue ‘recovery bonds’ on behalf of all euro zone countries to help fund efforts to rebuild national economies that are expected to dive deep into recession.

Conservative leaders in wealthy states such as Germany, the Netherlands and Austria have so far recoiled at the idea of issuing bonds with highly indebted nations, such as Italy.

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