National COVID-19 Rt drops below alarm level

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(ANSA) – ROME, APR 2 – Italy’s nationwide COVID-19 Rt
reproduction number has dropped to 0.98, below the alarm level
of 1 and down from 1.08 last week, according to a draft of the
weekly coronavirus monitoring report of the health ministry and
the Higher Heath Institute (ISS). The incidence has fallen to 232 cases for every 100,000
inhabitants, down from 240 last week.
    The ISS said that the proportion of intensive care places in
Italy taken up by COVID-19 patients has risen to 41%, up from
39% last week and well above the critical threshold of 30%.
    It said 14 of Italy’s regions/autonomous provinces were above
the 30% threshold, up from 12 last week.
    It said the proportion of coronavirus patients in other hospital
departments was 44%, above the critical threshold of 40%.
    According to a draft of the ISS’s weekly COVID report, the RT
rate is above 1 in 11 regions: Basilicata, Calabria, Campania,
Liguria, Marche, Puglia, Sardinia, Sicily, Tuscany, Valle
d’Aosta, and Veneto.
    The report said virus variants “are still dominant” and
restrictive measures “must not be eased”.
    Six regions have a high risk level: Calabria, Emilia-Romagna,
Liguria, Puglia, Tuscany and Veneto, the draft report said.
    Thirteen regions or autonomous provinces have a moderate risk.
    Four regions – Calabria, Emilia-Romagna, Puglia and Veneto –
present several resilience alerts, the draft monitoring report
    ISS President Silvio Brusaferro said the contagion curve was
starting to come down, but “very slowly”.
    He said the saturation of intensive care units was “concerning”.
    Health ministry prevention chief Gianni Rezza said the situation
was improving but the burden on hospitals was “still a heavy
    He added that there had been outbreaks of the British and
Brazilian variants “among young children too.”
Italy’s regions are anxiously waiting the full data from the
report, which will determine whether they are high-risk red
zones or medium-high orange zones in Italy’s tiered system of
COVID-19 restrictions.
    Veneto and Campania are hoping to go from being red, meaning
movements are limited and shops selling non-essential items are
closed, to orange.
    The restrictions in orange zones are far looser and all shops
are allowed to open.
    The whole nation will be a red zone from Saturday until Easter
Monday. (ANSA).


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