Italy records fewest new coronavirus fatalities for a week, but Spain hit by deadliest day yet

A general view of health workers outside the premises of the Courtyard hotel by Marriott Rome Central Park Source: ANSA

Italy has recorded its lowest daily coronavirus death toll for a week, while Spain has reported its highest daily increase in deaths so far.

The death toll from an outbreak of coronavirus in Italy has climbed by 727 to 13,155, the Civil Protection Agency says, a significantly smaller increase than on the previous day and the lowest daily tally since 26 March.

However, the number of new cases on Wednesday rose more sharply than on Tuesday, growing by 4,782 against a previous 4,053, bringing total infections since the outbreak came to light on 21 February to 110,574.

Of those originally infected country-wide, 16,847 had fully recovered on Wednesday, compared to 15,729 the day before.

Meanwhile, the number of cases of coronavirus in Spain has surpassed 100,000 while the number of fatalities reported overnight reached a new record, the country's health ministry says.

The number of cases rose to 102,136 on Wednesday up from 94,417 on Tuesday, the ministry said.

Overall fatalities caused by the disease rose to 9,053 from 8,189 on Tuesday.

The daily death toll reached a record 864, though the increase was lower in percentage terms than during the previous days.

Italy has registered more deaths than anywhere else in the world and accounts for about 30 per cent of all global fatalities from the virus.

Italy's largest daily toll from the epidemic was registered last Friday, when 919 people died.

There were 889 deaths on Saturday, 756 on Sunday, 812 on Monday and 837 on Tuesday.

Deaths rising in France

French health authorities have reported 509 new deaths from the coronavirus taking the total to 4,032, making the country the fourth to pass the 4,000-fatalities threshold after Italy, Spain and the United States.

After speeding up the previous two days, the rate of increase of deaths decelerated on Wednesday in France, which is now in its third week of lockdown to try to slow the spread of the virus.

The daily government tally still only accounts for those dying in hospital but authorities say they will very soon be able to compile data on deaths in retirement homes, which is likely to result in a big increase in registered fatalities.

State health agency director Jerome Salomon told a news conference that the number of cases had risen to 56,989, a rise of 9.0 per cent, versus +17 per cent on Tuesday.

Salomon said 6,017 people were in a serious condition needing life support, up 8.0 per cent compared with Tuesday.

France has increased the number of beds in intensive care units from 5,000 to about 10,000 since the start of the crisis and it is scrambling to reach 14,500.

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