Tue, 04 Aug 2020

ROME, July 7 (Xinhua) -- Italy's coronavirus pandemic numbers continued on a downward trend Tuesday, as Health Minister Roberto Speranza suspended flights from Bangladesh for a week over a spike in cases among the Bangladeshi community in Rome caused by arrivals from their homeland.

A total of 138 people got infected by the new coronavirus over the past 24 hours, the Italian Ministry of Health said on Tuesday.

This compares with 208 new infections on Monday. Total active cases stood at 14,242, down from 14,709 on Monday, according to data from the ministry.

Of the current active cases, 940 people were hospitalized with symptoms (down from 946 hospitalizations on Monday) and 13,232 were quarantined at home because they are asymptomatic or have very light symptoms (compared with 13,691 home quarantines on Monday).

Currently, 70 COVID-19 patients are hospitalized in the ICU (down from 72 on Monday) and they are located in six out of Italy's 20 regions: most of them (36) are in the northern Lombardy region where the pandemic officially broke out on Feb. 21, followed by 13 in the central Lazio region where Rome is located. The rest are spread out among the northern regions of Emilia-Romagna, Liguria, Piedmont, Tuscany, and Veneto.

Another 30 COVID-19 patients have died, bringing the overall death toll to 34,899 (against 34,869 total fatalities on Monday).

On the positive side, 574 patients have recovered, bringing the total to 192,815, up from 192,241 recoveries on Monday, according to the Ministry of Health.

The densely populated and highly industrialized Lombardy region whose capital is Milan still led among Italy's 20 regions in terms of cases, with 9,074 active infections (down from 9,492 infections on Monday), 16,713 deaths (up from 16,700 deaths on Monday), and 68,793 recoveries (against 68,335 recoveries on Monday).

The regions with the least number of active cases were Valle d'Aosta, which is located in the Alps mountain range and borders on France and Switzerland, and the southern Basilicata region, with five and four cases each, respectively (unchanged since Monday).

The Health Ministry also said just over 5.7 million swabs to test for the virus have been carried out so far, up by 43,219 swabs compared to Monday. The region that carried out the most swabs was Veneto, whose capital is Venice, with 9,422 people tested, followed by Emilia-Romagna with 6,626 tests carried out in the past 24 hours.

The overall number of COVID-19 infections, fatalities and recoveries rose to 241,956 cases nationwide over the past 24 hours (compared to 241,819 total cases on Monday), the Ministry of Health said.

Italy has a population of over 60 million inhabitants.

The number of cases on a flight from Dakha on Monday has now risen to 21. The minister said additional precautionary measures for non-Schengen and non-EU arrivals would be drafted in the coming week.

Speranza said quarantine for non-Schengen and non-EU arrivals has been confirmed and that "after all the sacrifices we have made we cannot afford to import infections from abroad," according to a Ministry of Health statement.

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