Italy reports 349 new virus deaths, taking total to over 2,000

By: AFP      Published: 10:32 PM, 16 Mar, 2020
Italy reports 349 new virus deaths, taking total to over 2,000
A patient flashes the victory sign as she is being brought on a stretcher into the building of the newly built Columbus Covid 2 temporary hospital to fight the new coronavirus infection at the Gemelli hospital in Rome. AFP

Italy on Monday reported 349 new deaths from the novel coronavirus, taking its total since last month to 2,158, the most after China.

The number of official COVID-19 fatalities has more than doubled since Thursday, when Italy's toll topped 1,000 for the first time. Italy now has 27,980 infections, compared to 15,113 four days ago.

It has reported more than 700 deaths in two days. Among specific regions, the overwhelming majority of the fatalities remained largely confined to northern regions, where the virus first started spreading around cities such as Milan.

The Italian financial capital's Lombardy region recorded 1,420 deaths, of 66 percent of Italy's total -- about the same share it has had throughout the crisis. But the neighbouring Piedmont region around Turin, which is home to the Italian auto industry, has seen its number of deaths and infections nearly double in two days.

Piedmont reported 111 deaths and 1,516 infections on Monday, compared to 59 deaths and 873 infections on Saturday. The Lazio region around Rome has recoded 19 deaths and 523 infections.

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