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Italy's daily COVID-19 death toll continues to fall

Xinhua | Updated: 2020-05-25 09:37

Tourists wearing protective masks take a selfie on the Rialto Bridge following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Venice, Italy, May 24, 2020. [Photo/Agencies]

ROME - Italy recorded just 50 deaths from COVID-19 Sunday, its lowest daily death toll since the COVID-19 outbreak's earliest days, though the hard-hit northern region of Lombardy did not update its death-toll data for the last 24 hours.

The overall trend for the death toll has been improving in recent weeks. After reaching a one-day high of nearly 1,000 in late March, numbers have gradually decreased.

Earlier this week, the number was 99, the first time in double digits since the country recorded 97 deaths on March 9, the day Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announced the nationwide lockdown, effective the following morning.

Officially, Sunday's total of 50 deaths was the lowest since the country saw only 36 deaths on March 7.

But even without a complete report from Lombardy, the number continues the recent trend. Over the 24-hour period from Friday to Saturday, Italy recorded 119 deaths.

Lombardy has suffered more than any other Italian region from the COVID-19 outbreak: with 15,840 deaths recorded as of Saturday, it has seen nearly half of Italy's total of 32,785 deaths, despite having only around one-sixth of the country's total population.

Nationwide, the number of new infections fell by 1,158 to 56,594, while those cured rose by 1,639 to 140,479.

Italy is set to start a national serological screening process in the coming week. The first phase of the testing will include 150,000 individuals divided to reflect the country's overall demographics in order to determine how widespread the coronavirus antibody is. Once complete, the testing will be widened.

The most common way to have the coronavirus antibody is to have been infected and recovered. It is believed that individuals with the coronavirus antibody are either immune from COVID-19 or are far less likely to be re-infected.

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