Milan, October 18
The number of confirmed positive cases of coronavirus in Italy continued to rise to new records on Sunday, hitting 11,705 in the last 24 hours.
Many more tests are being carried out than during the March-April peak, when only the very ill were tested, but doctors have warned that the virus again is infecting more vulnerable patients and hospitals are increasingly under stress.
A total of 750 patients were being treated in intensive care Sunday, up 45 from a day earlier, while more than 7,000 people were hospitalised, according to Health Ministry statistics.
Pressure was especially acute in Lombardy, where 110 ICU beds were filled and more than 1,000 COVID-19 patients were hospitalised. Italy has recorded a total of 36.543 deaths in the pandemic, 69 in the last 24 hours.
The government was expected to announce additional restrictions, having already made masks mandatory outdoors, banned casual pick-up sports and mandating closure of bars and restaurants at midnight in a bid to stop the contagion. — AP