Very important news has come out of Italy today as the Mediterranean country ravaged by the COVID-19 pandemic recorded its first drop in coronavirus patients in intensive care since this whole ordeal in the peninsula started a month and a half ago.
Over the past 24 hours, there were 3,994 people in intensive care in Italy, a drop from the previous 4,068. This is the first time a smaller figure has been registered in this field since northern Italy first started dealing with its outbreak back on 21st February.
Over 70 people were discharged from the ICU in the past 24 hours, a record statistic that is as important socially as it is logistically.
Speaking to reporters about the news, civil protection authority chef Angelo Borrelli said such a reality “allows ours hospitals to breathe”.
Meanwhile, Italy also registered lower rates of both daily deaths and new infections.
“The figure is constantly decreasing,” Borrelli said of Italy’s daily death toll, which on Saturday sat at 681. For context, that figure was nearly 1,000 just eight days ago. Sadly, however, this drop coincided with the country hitting – and exceeding – the grime milestone of 15,000 total deaths.
Meanwhile, the daily rise in new infections across Italy has also slowed down, and is now just 4%. Today did see more new cases than yesterday, though: a total of 2,886 new patients.
But while many people have pointed at Italy’s recent statistics as evidence of an arrival at a plateau, authorities haven’t declared victory just yet.
In fact, the country is preparing for at least another month of general lockdown, with some civil unrest being reported in poorer regions to the south.
As it stands, there have now been 1,159,515 confirmed cases of COVID-19 all over the world. Italy, with 124,632 of those cases, has just been overtaken by Spain (who have just over 100 more cases). Meanwhile, a whopping 290,606 cases have been confirmed in the United States of America. A total of 237,436 people have so far recovered from COVID0-19.
Back in Malta, the islands now have 213 confirmed cases, with 11 new cases – all of local transmission – being confirmed today.