Italy on Monday reported 195 new fatalities from coronavirus, bringing the total to 29,079, as the so-called Phase 2 of the emergency started.
Data released by Italy’s Civil Protection Department confirmed that the country has passed the peak of the outbreak, as more than 4 million people went back to work after two months of strict lockdown.
The tally of new active infections fell 199, putting the tally at 99,980, below the psychological threshold of 100,000.
Meanwhile, recoveries continued to climb, jumping to 82,879 as more patients left intensive care, easing pressure on Italy’s struggling healthcare system.
The epicenter of the Italian outbreak remains the northern Lombardy region, where fatalities keep rising, reaching 14,294, almost half of the country’s total deaths.
Under the phase 2 rules, Italian citizens will be allowed to visit relatives and move more freely within each region. Some strategic businesses will restart activities, but under stricter security protocols.
Schools, hairdressers, gyms and many other commercial activities, however, will stay closed. Cafes and restaurants will offer takeaway only, and all travel between regions will be banned except for work, health, or emergencies.
“We’re turning a new page, and we will have to write it together with faith and responsibility,” Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said in a Facebook post on Sunday. “The risks of having more infections are numerous, but we will be able to avoid them with responsibility.”
With factories and construction sites restarting activities, the government is also enforcing new rules for traveling on public transportation, ensuring that key social distancing requirements are met.
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